We all stumble in our Journey of Love with the Lord. Times when we are not as close to Him as we would have thought. One of the reasons is that our hearts become focused on someone, or something else. As humans, we don’t like to share the love of the one our heart is focused on?
Yet we expect God who loves us passionately to share our love with other lovers. How could this be that I am doing this, you may ask?
Our God is a jealous God (Deut 4:24) and will not accept a piece of your heart. Like any lover, He wants all of your heart. (Mark 12:29-31)
Hosea’s wife is likened to us as believers in Hosea 2, the Lord being Hosea himself. She is disappointed or dissatisfied with their relationship and breaks her commitments to Him. She goes on to pursue other lovers, other dreams and goals that do not include Him. Notice how it is her disappointment and dissatisfaction that causes her to pursue other lovers.
Like Hosea’s wife, we will find that God does not allow us to find that which will replace Him in our lives. We may “…search for them, but not find them…” (Hosea 2:6-7). But instead, God jealously allows us to discover that the other lovers cannot love us like we want to be loved. We realise that we are “better off with Him.”
I like that in His love for me, He even understands that I am weak and jealously guards over me while I find my way back to Him.
God, like Hosea, reminds us how he cares for us (Hosea 2:8-13) and how our other lovers do not. He woes us back to Him (v14) and restores us (v15) and we are established again as His beloved (Hosea 2:19-20). His goal is not just to have our love, but to restore us and rebuild us as His beloved.
So did you get that? God does not tolerate other lovers. So who are the other lovers? They are:
Things that distract us from the Lord so that our heart no longer yearns for Him, but for our distraction. This distraction grabs our thoughts, our time, our attention, our resources. They LOOK attractive to us.
Things we dwell on rather than the Lord, those things that occupy the deep recesses of our mind i.e. anger, unforgiveness, jealousy, an offence etc. We live with them, these quiet lovers because we cannot leave them and don’t want to try living without them.
Things that we indulge in (pleasures) so that we find that we do not need the Lord to satisfy us. Our indulgence is better than the Lord. When our indulgence no longer satisfies, we find a new indulgence.
These other lovers draw us away from our One True Love and our eyes are no longer “fixed on Jesus the author and perfector of our faith.” (Heb 12:2) God does not tolerate these other lovers and jealously works against them in our lives. God is faithful (Jeremiah 33:11) and ensures that we find Him again when we admit to ourselves and to Him, that our other lovers are not like Him.
Lord, all of my heart. Do not let me settle for giving you any less of my heart than all of my heart. May I have eyes only for You and not entertain other lovers in my heart. Show me what distracts me from You, what occupies my heart instead of You. Show me what I dwell on that steals my thoughts and my heart from You. Show me what I indulge in that I think satisfies my need for You, but actually does not. Help me to see and recognise these other lovers so that I may reject them out of my heart for good. O Lord, make my heart ever true to You.
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