It’s been a while. 365 was a great challenge to myself…but after the post on Drowning I realized I had just added another “thing” in my life that I was so desperately trying to simplify. So I will issue another 365 challenge one day…and it will be awesome! But for now…I’ll just write as it comes.
I had lunch with a friend this week. I love this woman. She has been with me through so much of what I have written about in the past 5 years, the good, the bad, the ugly…she has been there and she has loved me through it all. We don’t see each other often actually, but when we do it is always the exact right time. We trust each other enough to truly spill out the depths of what is going on in the darker corners of our hearts, talk about our hopes, reveal crushed dreams, and share our fears. Our conversations are raw….and lovely.
This time as our conversation went to current struggles and desires that we are both in this season, we talked about how we are learning to lean in and trust in ways that we have never had to before. More than that we are learning to lean into Christ in ways we have never seen exemplified before. Our parent’s had different struggles, they leaned in to trust in different ways…and modeled that well and not so well – depending on the circumstance. But our journeys as single women look different than our married parents, and we have to trust God in different ways.
While in the midst of this conversation I was reminded of a study I just completed of the book of Hosea. Hosea is this little book in the Old Testament that many simply skip over, but there is so much there. The basis of the story is this: Hosea, a prophet, was told by God to marry this prostitute named Gomer. (let us pause here and have a quick giggle about the name…). The story goes on to tell us that the prostitute has children with Hosea and then leaves the marriage to go back and become a prostitute again. At which time, Hosea goes searching the city to buy her back. He bought her back…though technically she was already his.
I could spend a month blogging about lessons I learned from this book, however, today this is where I want to take this example. I find myself as Gomer more times than I care to admit. I am the prostitute, I am the unfaithful. How often do I run back to the life I used to know after grace has pulled me out and given me a loving home? Right now I find that I am a prostitute of trust…. I am good at trusting Him with what is “easy” in my life, and trusting Him with others in my life…but I run right back to the world of panic when the going gets rough or when He does not seem to be fulfilling the desires of my heart in my time table. I prostitute myself out to trying to solve it on my own or trying to be in control….running to everything and everyone for comfort and hope, except to the only One who can truly give it.
Here is what I am most in awe of about this story.
This story is not about the prostitute. It is not even about Hosea. It is about a God who comes to find me in the city of destruction I have chosen to run back to – every.time. He gathers me up and says to me over and over – You are MINE! You are MINE! You are MINE! You are not a prostitute, you are the daughter of a King and the bride of a Prince. YOU are My favorite. I want you. Everything I have done for you, I would do again because I love you and you are Mine!
That takes my breath away.
You see, this year my biggest struggle has been my singleness and all that it entails. It has brought on dark days, and lonely nights. I long to be wanted. I want to be someone’s somebody. And it seems as if so many of my friends are finding it and I am not. But at the end of the day somewhere in my frenetic search for Mr. Right, or in the trying to become who I think I have to be to capture a man’s attention…in that moment God captures me with this truth again…I am His. He WANTS me. He would sacrifice the life of His Son again to have me. He bought me with a price, and I am HIS.
The reality here is that we are all the prostitute. We all sell our selves out to the highest bidder in hopes that they will bring us the thing we desire most, only to find it is a trap that will hold us in bondage. But the glorious truth is that just like Hosea went to the darkest street to buy back Gomer, God will come to the darkest parts of our lives to buy us back. He will hold us tightly in his arms and whisper – You are mine. I desire you. I would do it all again for you.
And that dear friends, is glorious.