Hosea 2014: Day 7

He sovereignly waits while we run

by

Today's Text: Hosea 5:1-15, 2 Kings 17:19-20, Jeremiah 2:26-28

Text: Hosea 5:1-15, 2 Kings 17:19-20, Jeremiah 2:26-28

 I will return again to my place, until they acknowledge their guilt and seek my face, and in their distress earnestly seek me.
– Hosea 5:15

At first reading, Hosea 5 may make you tremble. After all, we can see ourselves in Israel—in their disobedience, idolatry, pride, and in their choosing man over God. God’s wrath is evident in the text.

God knows that Israel’s pride of earthly blessings and accomplishments has hardened their hearts towards seeking him. Interestingly, although God has blessed them with these things, Israel turns to other kings for guidance and protection. The people have decided that turning to sinful man is easier than repenting and returning to their Lord. (I don’t know about you, but this starting to sound like someone I know. Ahem.) Hosea writes, “Their deeds do not permit them to return to their God. A spirit of prostitution is in their heart; they do not acknowledge the Lord.” (5:4 NIV)

God decrees that He will be present in their secret and public judgements (5:12, 14), that Israel will stumble in its wickedness (5:5), and that He will forsake them (5:6). Reading these verses makes me cringe. They seem so harsh, so bare, so exposed.

But then we read the end. “Then I will return to my lair until they have borne their guilt and seek my face—in their misery they will earnestly seek me.” (Hosea 5:15 NIV)

The seeking was the point all along.

Imagine if Israel was someone you cared so deeply for that you could never let her go. You would do anything for her, but she continually turns away from you. God knows that Israel will turn to Him again, but they will do so in unhappiness, in need. As in so many times before, God’s people will only seek His face when they are at rock bottom. Like a wise parent with an unruly child, He has to let them turn away so that they can turn back (2 Kings 17:19-20 NLT).

Would He love to see them have it all and praise Him for it? Of course. To be blessed abundantly, beyond their wildest dreams, and still turn to Him with their needs and their worship? Absolutely. Does Israel ever stay with God when they’re on top of the world? (Jeremiah 2:27 NLT)

Do we?

So God waits. He watches us with sadness, with righteous anger, with tender grief for all we must go through again. When we return to Him broken, with hands out, He holds us close. He starts over again, patiently teaching us about His love and our need to obey and be humbled.

Let’s turn to Him now, friends, wherever we may be. Let’s seek His face and open our hands and receive our Heavenly Father’s relentless love. He’s had His eye on you all along.

7

  • Thank God for never giving up on us! I’m humbled by that fact the more life I live.

  • This passage makes me worry so much for our country. Idols, human leaders, money, sex…..
    Please God don’t leave us alone!!!

  • This is so amazing to read especially since I was thinking about it the other day. When I was in middle school I started going to a church I liked with my mom. The worship was awesome the messages were clear and I loved it. I didn’t really understand God and His love yet at this point. But I went every week because I wanted to. I brought my friends, and we would stand in the back and be emo, but I was there by choice. I was starting to listen to the messages of right and wrong in a religious way and still didn’t understand His love. I ended up going to high school still religious, dated a non-believer boyfriend, turned my back on God because I knew I couldn’t date this guy and have God (let me mention when my boyfriend told me he didn’t believe in God I got this overwhelming bad feeling like our relationship wasn’t right). This man (or boy) abused me physically, emotionally, mentally, and verbally. All the while I was fighting that I knew there was a God and I was waiting for him to punish me. He didn’t, anything I suffered during that time period was of my own doing. I got out of the relationship and then went back to God, but yet again, it was still religious and I didn’t understand His love for me. I looked for love in the face of men, again. I talked to God but still did what I wanted and honestly told God, I’m sorry I’ll come back when I’m finished doing what I want. I don’t know the exact words but I listened to Christian music in my car and prayed but found another man to attach to and God was put to the side. I got pregnant, realized this man had no intention of marrying me, so I left him. I knew I wanted to raise my son as a Christian and so I started seeking God (after my mom told me I couldn’t teach my son to be a Christian if I wasn’t being one). I was seeking God for my son but ended up in a relationship with God and I finally understood His love and His voice. I’m not perfect and I recently had another moment where I briefly ran, but God’s love is relentless and He never stops pursuing us. I am so grateful for a sovereign God who loves me and has been patient with me even when I didn’t deserve His love.

  • I hit rock-bottom a few weeks ago, and God has been so faithful to me in such an unfruitful season of my life. Amid struggles, sin, and misery, He’s revealed Himself to me.

  • I love how The Lord’s timing always works, just as I am praying, Lord how do I let you and your word be relevant in my life, He turns me to the answer “Just seek me earnestly before anything else.”

  • Samantha Edwards

    I want to stop being a part time Christian for a full time God.

  • Elizabeth

    He alone is worthy

  • It is almost scary how EASY it is to put something or someone before God. I know right now God is training my heart to seek him first before anyone. And some days it’s easy but others it’s not. Sometimes I think I’m doing a great job by just reading my bible in the morning and that equals putting God first. Which it is better than I have been doing in the past. But I need to be putting him before everything throughout my day. God isn’t just available in the morning he is there with me throughout it all. Thank you lord for reminding me this this morning. I pray I draw closer to you each day this week.

  • Mr. Alex

    This is something I've been thinking about a lot lately. For me, it's easy to seek God and rely on him when things are going poorly. Where else could I turn? But when life is good, as it has been for me for a long time, and I'm finding success and other people are praising me for the good work I'm doing, it's so hard for me to seek. I want to be the one responsible for my success, I want to be proud of my accomplishments. Turning those blessings into praise and avoiding selfishness and pride is difficult and many people don't even see why being proud of oneself is a sin. I'm grateful to this study for reminding me who should receive the glory.
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  • Juanita DJ Camarillo

    He holds us close. He turns away only because we need to be reminded of the emptiness without Him. But praise and honor and glory be to you, Lord, because when we turn back to you, you are so Willing, so Faithful, so Loving, so Graceful in taking us back- this broken, sinful, forgetful creation of yours… You alone are good, Lord and you alone are worthy!

  • Jen Lebo

    Being on top of the world. Money. Riches. We say “ugh I’m poor” but we are so rich. So we don’t “need” God. I’m so convicted of how I am living. Not depending on God because “I’ve got this”. I talk God but I don’t live Him. Live in utter dependence day by day. Ugh. He must want to spit me out. Such a scary prayer but I am praying for God’s will in my life. Completely. I don’t want to miss out on the entire purpose of my life. To live for Jesus and be His alone.

  • Mrs.Walton

    I need to make more of an effort to seek full heartedly all the time.

  • Ashton Morgan

    Wow! Exactly what I needed this morning. I do see in my life how I seek Him in the bad times, but He wants us to seek Him all the time! What a powerful point.

  • I needed this! It’s so easy to push God aside when things are good or we’re busy with new experiences. The truth is, we need God ALL the time and He wants to be close with us.

  • Rikki Alexandria

    It really is sad that I find myself earnestly seeking God in trials and only seeking Him when there’s an opportunity during normal days. I need to become more purposeful in my need to be alone with God everyday. This was a great reminder that pulls me closer to Him.

  • To answer the question : “where do we put God when we are on top of the world?” The answer makes me cringe. He becomes the low man on the totem pole to me- I even use his as a foot stool. Ugh God is worth so much more than that and He deserves all the Glory for where he brings me.

  • This was such an amazing reminder. So many time, I remember to only truly seek God when I am in trouble or hit rock bottom. I know that this is so wrong. I should be praising him at all point in my life. It is almost embarrassing to only come back to him when I need his help and I am broken. Its embarrassing because I know that this is wrong. I pray that I seek him more often and praise him when my life is going great.

  • As I read these verses it’s so easy to change “Israel” to “Tessa”. In so many was I have acted just like Israel did in those days; turning to my pride and my own accomplishments for a measure of my value. God has definitely bringing my failings to light through the readings in Hosea. He is edifying who I am helping me remove the sluff of pride and self reliance so I can learn to solely rely on him. Today’s study hit home for me, I pray that I may turn completely to God and have him make me into the person he created me to be!

    • Whitney

      Love your last statement. It’s speaks exactly what I feel. “…I pray that I may turn completely to God and have Him make me into the person he created me to be!”
      I pray that, too. For when we are in sync with His plan for us, only then will we be happiest.

  • Marci Peach

    Thank you thank you thank you God! Wow! What a picture. This study is exactly the fresh wind I have needed!

  • Raquel Stellings

    These devotional a have been so great. I was struggling a lot at work and getting very stressed, seeking the approval of my coworkers and employer. I just couldn’t seem to do the most simple tasks and carry them through. Things I know how to do and have done before. It was just something about the atmosphere I suppose. But yesterday I was let go, which I understand. And reading this devotional today. Is encouraging. I make so many idols in my life. Mostly myself and my own strength. I have been praying for God to go ahead of me. But I think I need to change that to a prayer of being behind Him.

    • SheReadsTruth

      Raquel, thank you so much for joining us today! We love having you. I\’m praying that you continue to move in His strength and realize you have all the approval you need in Him! Love to you!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • Stephanie Rickman

    I often feel that we forget to consider what kind of grief we cause our God. It hurts my heart to think of hurting Him, and yet, I do it daily. I am overwhelmed with this devotional and God’s love for us through His word and through these amazing women. Thank you.

    • Marci Peach

      This was my feeling as well, it brought tears to my eyes to think of him waiting for me to seek him as I struggle, pridefully, alone. Amazing and awesome!

    • Alyce

      This is exactly what struck me today too. Oh God, I am so sorry for hurting you!

  • Mamamuffin83

    I’m always turning away, God help me.

  • ErinLaRue

    This brings me hope. This devotional is showing me how wrong I’ve been living my life with my husband. We turned away from him the moment we got married. Now we’re almost torn apart and it’s killing me. I’m trying to be patient in affliction, and with God’s grace and him showing me this community, he’s helping me. I have hope again and I am so grateful.

    • Juanita DJ Camarillo

      Praying for you and your husband, that our Lord would lead you both to rearrange your priorities that you would put him first. In Jesus’ name. Amen

  • Virginia

    I’m really hoping to experience His relentless love toward me. I’m in the thick of it right now. Looking to other things that look like they’ll satisfy and they’re leaving me empty and in despair almost. My prayer is to find His love to be so overwhelming that it changes everything and changes me. My heart is so hard and I feel so stuck, not sure how to get out. I really hope to experience God’s love like I’ve never before.

    • Gina Zeidler

      Ask The Lord to give you the strength, His strength, to seek him first. So been there sister.

    • Kacey Lake

      It sounds to me like your heart isn’t as hard as you think! Your commitment to being in His word, your openness. Praying the presence of the Living God meets you and sustains you today, sister. Sometimes meeting Him most for me, is when I stop striving and straining to hear Him, and just sit in His presence.

  • Tears!! I went through a rough patch with my boyfriend 1 month after dating 2 years ago. We had such a huge falling out..and tonight i was talking to him and saying that the reason that happened, i feel, is because i was so obsessed with love for my boyfriend that after praising God for letting me find this perfect match, i quickly turned away from God and got distracted with intense obsessive love for my boyfriend. When God put me in a dark, emotional time- i reached back out again and felt so much love in my heart even when i felt like the world was ending. So strange how God works. He really does have our best intentions at heart even if you’re having a rough patch. I cant believe i read this tonight..after a few hours ago expressing the same exact feelings.

    • Candace

      I went through the same experience and through it, I’ve learned not to get distracted from giving God the glory. He’s the gift giver and it’s all for His glory anyway! It was a hard lesson to learn, but so thankful I understand it now. So glad I have company in this, sister!

  • Nikki Smith

    What a prick to the heart today (again!). Wow. I’m really evaluating where God is in my life. Bless you all for this study.

    • SheReadsTruth

      Thanks for joining us, Nikki! So glad you\’re here!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • I have an 18 year old brother who has been so difficult for my family…he has stolen my parents’ cars, broken into their house when they were gone, and has treated us terribly. This passage is so much clearer when I think about the relationship between my brother and my parents…they love him so much but sometimes that means they need to let him live his destructive lifestyle and not allow him to live at home. The most loving thing they can do is wait for him, let him exhaust all his other destructive paths, and let him become desperate for long lasting change. Wow. God does the same for us.

    • SheReadsTruth

      Wow, Kate. So thankful that you would share this with us. He does the same for us, and sometimes I can barely believe it! Thanks for joining us today!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • eddlewoman

    I have been struggling with infertility for 10 years, and to avoid the pain of it, had shut up the desire and the conversation with God about it all together. Until the last 2 years when He would allow me to ignore it no more. He showed me that I was oppressing my own heart with hopelessness and resisting His intimacy and His comfort – shutting him out, trying so hard to avoid the pain. One day when we had wrestled over it for many months, and I thought i was making strides in letting Him in, I cried out, "How long do I have to wait?!" His response stunned me. I heard him say immediately, "How long will you reject Me?"
    Shudder.
    I realized that He was right (of course). I was still keeping Him at arms length, looking to myself and my anger to comfort my heart.

    I say all that to say that I have experienced this jealous love of YAHWEH God. It is intense. It is not kidding around or beating around the bush, or trying not to hurt our feelings. And it is hard to face, even though it is good news in the end. His Love is fierce for us, sisters. He wants to be our Comforter and our Provider. And he knows that our other sources for these things will leave us high and dry, or worse, ravaged. But my sin did not permit me to believe that and turn to Him… Until the Spirit softened my heart enough to admit my ridiculousness. I bawled my eyes out in His arms as he agreed with my confession and told me how much He loved me. I needed both his abrupt confrontation, and his gentle embrace. He brings both His strength and His mercy to us because He is such a good Father. Praise Him for this kind of mercy! and a love so strong that He can't stay away forever.

  • I just thought about this today. I was out picking tomatoes in my dad’s field. It was a beautiful day. I had nothing to complain about except a lack of foreknowledge of what comes next job-wise. And even when I was on top of the world today…I seemed to be unsatisfied with all of my blessings: helping my family, gorgeous weather, a respite from my career to discern next steps, an opportunity to learn more skills, etc. How crazy! It’s like I have one mode of communication with God…”I need…” O Lord! I only need you! I’ve been foolish! Help me to see! Thank you for my wonderful blessings! They are too numerous to count. You are GOOD…in every way.

  • Czarina Kaye

    Praise God for being so patient. "Where do we put God when we're on top of the world?" This is a question I need to ask myself again and again. I never want to loose sight of my Creator.

    • SheReadsTruth

      Amen, Czarina! Beautiful truth! Thanks for the reminder!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • Wonderful!!! Hosea has been super convicting… Jeremiah 2:27 hit kinda hard. In a good way… :)

  • Malaine Mayfield

    Wow! This study really challenged me to look at my personal life and ask myself if I seek God earnestly when everything is going great. I want to make God the center in everything I do even when things seem to going so well.

    • SheReadsTruth

      Malaine, I love hearing what God\’s teaching you through this study! It sounds like He is doing big things! We love having you!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • Jennifer

    I’m in a similar place my friend! Or I was for a very long time. God has just recently brought me out of a dark tunnel. Remember this: God never leaves His children and He’s walking beside you… Ask Him everyday to let you feel that! When you feel down, He is there to hold you. And what a sweet thing it is to be held by our Savior. Cry out to Him in prayer, be honest before Him. Read the psalms. Keep reading His word. He is there and He will bring you out of this and every valley. In the mean time, He is using this time to teach you and show you His love. Its when were forced to turn to Him that we see all that He is and more! Keep seeking, and resting in, Him.

  • Today’s study really touched me. I was once that child that turned from Him and looked to the world for happiness, comfort and success. Looking back now I can see some incredible blessings that God continued to give me. Yes, even though I could not see Him, He still had his eye on me. Oh how thankful I am that he never lost sight. After many lonely years, I surrendered with open hands. And the words of today’s devotion are spot on: “He holds us close. He starts over again, patiently teaching us about His love and our need to humbly obey.” His relentless love, oh so powerful.

  • Haley Ryan

    That is one of the biggest struggles I have…turning to the world’s council for my struggles and problems. That’s my total first instinct BUT it’s so wrong. So this was very convicting and speaking straight to me! So thankful God points us back to Him especially in the coolest ways like through an app I have on my phone :) he just wants my humble prayer and for me to seek Him FIRST. So simple yet I make it so hard. Thankful for day 7 of this study!

  • Today's study has me thinking about all of the times I have problems, and like the Israelite's, seek other's counsel first. Even when I'm going to godly people first, God wants me to come to Him humbly in prayer. Super convicting!

    I'm so glad for a God who is not just present and waiting for us in the bad, but also in the good. He wants to celebrate with us and walk with us through every aspect in life…He's just waiting for us to turn to Him.

    • SheReadsTruth

      I\’m so thankful for a God who is also in the good too, Jana! Such a good point. Thanks for joining us!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • Gabriella1

    This plan has been incredibly hard for me to read, it’s been a dark season where I’ve felt that God has turned his face away from me. I’ve struggled to be still and it’s painful facing my many idols which this plan has revealed. However I’m so encouraged and grateful by the community of sisters and transparency which gives me hope that a time will come where I will feel Gods presence again and my soul and heart will be still enough to receive him.

    • SheReadsTruth

      Gabriella, it sounds like God is doing incredible things in your heart. I am so grateful for your bravery to walk through the darkness and realize hope is at the end! We love having you!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • Loved the message today!

    • SheReadsTruth

      Thanks for joining us, Brenda! We love having you!

      xoxo-Kaitlin for She Reads Truth

  • amen

  • Caroline

    So humbled, cleansed and encouraged with this today. Thank you, Candacejo – your comments were such a blessing to me and I just finished listening to "Unstoppable Love" – WOW. Thank you SRT! Bless the LORD, oh my soul and may I live praising You!

  • Ashley S.

    I Loved this sooo much! Because I used to live for the world & came back to God about 4-5 months ago! It has been the best decision I’ve ever made! I’m taking each day by faith & allowing Him to lead me! I’m so happy we have a forgiving & grace filled God! This life on earth is trying a blessing from Him!

  • Amen! Amen!

    Thank you Lord for your grace and mercy when I am rebellious and turn away from you. Help me to share my blessings and needs with you.

    LOVED this message today!!!

  • Such a beautiful example of the body of Christ, ladies. Thank you for sharing your words and convictions. I have finally released a sin after +25 years. I thought that I needed to carry it alone as my penance. Now I am stronger for laying it at His feet and feeling His love and acceptance. I want to grow every day and when those doubts creep in and the voices taunt me I return to Him… “The seeking was the point all along”. I know that in Him and only Him am I strong.

  • Would He love to see them have it all and praise Him for it? Of course. To be blessed abundantly, beyond their wildest dreams, and still turn to Him with their needs and their worship? Absolutely. Does Israel ever stay with God when they’re on top of the world? (Jeremiah 2:27 NLT)
    Do we?

    Powerful words this morning, ladies. Very convicting. This study of Hosea is really doing a number on me. I am so thankful that God is always waiting for me. Praying this morning that I stay with God in good times and in bad.

    Right now I'm in a surgery waiting room while my dad has an emergency endoscopy to figure out why his liver isn't functioning properly. My mom and I have had no sleep. Its a mess. But I know God is faithful. Leaning in to Him this morning. It's all I can do!

  • Leenda324

    He is always faithful. Always. So glad that my standing in Christ has nothing to do with my feelings. It's His grace and His "relentless love". Thank God for that!

  • What a powerful read this was today. It really hits you right at the core, because this is all of us. We seem to forget that when we have been blessed with something, it was God's doing all along! I'm also thankful that He is always there when I need to turn to Him, even if it is at rock bottom.

  • A bit of a random thought, here. Reading today’s scripture, I realize I’ve known a man named Ephraim, a woman named Mizpah, and a child named Judah. I can’t help but wonder what their parent’s motivations were in giving their babies these particular names. Looking forward to seeing how God’s persistent love unfolds through the rest of this story!

  • Convicted by the verse in Jeremiah: "Where then are the gods you made for yourselves?" The gods of comfort, fear, and lukewarm faith are gods that I welcome into my life too frequently. I pray to acknowledge God, in good times and in bad, to admit my guilt in seeking what I wish above His will, and to press in. To do more than just say or write the correct things, but to truly be won over and living for Christ. That scares me. But the alternative scares me more.

    • Kris

      Sarah – everything you wrote spoke directly to me. Because it’s exactly how I have been feeling lately. Praying for you – that we both can always seek Him first – in good times or bad / happy or sad / on top of the world or at our lowest points… Xo

  • Ruth Polson

    What a great reminder. So thankful that My Heavenly Father reminds me of my need for Him. This world is not my home, I’m just a passing through…
    I’m so thankful that He does pull back and allows me to realize that I can’t do this on my own and I can’t run from anything…May I never forget my daily need for Christ.

  • Amen.
    Such a good reminder. This world is not our home, and the God we serve is gracious to remind us of this and of our need for Him.
    As painful as it is, I am thankful that He DOES pull away so that I can feel my need for Him again and again.

  • I see here a people left to their own way. God called them and called them…..they even know the blessings of God because they have experienced them. Yet they turn their backs….as we do. We know what the blessings could be yet we think we can do it better on our own. So, God loves enough to leave us to our own demise. He never turns his back but waits. Waits patiently for us to come to our senses and come to Him. I used to think this type of passage was for those who were living a lifestyle of sin. But now I see it can be related to everyday sins we struggle with that we don't let go of or we turn back to because it's easier. We all have a sin that we will never fully overcome until we reach the pearl gates. But when we give in to that sin and give up on doing the right thing. I think that's when God leaves us to our own choice…..it's a lot like parenting. We say don't touch so many times and until our child is burned he won't learn sometimes. Yet we stand there with arms open ready to wipe away the tears and point them in a new direction. It's just amazing that we have a Father who never gets weary of us.

  • I have used Hosea 5:15 for years to pray for spiritual prodigals, including, at times, my husband, my children, and myself: Lord make ______ so miserable and so desperate that they will earnestly seek you. And I pray Jer. 29:13. He is always faithful.

  • How can I grieve a loving God Who cares so much for me? Over and over? Yet I do. His unconditional love is taking on new meaning for me through this study, as are the measure and gravity of my unfaithfulness. I ask forgiveness, cast myself on His mercy and plead for His grace. Thank you, sweet Jesus, that You have made a way to the Father for me.

  • Stephanie S

    As I read and ponder today's word I am thankful for God Preveinent Grace a word I learned along the way, that even when I turn from him he still pursues me, and waits for me to seek him, and in my desperate plea he says yes child I'm here I have never left you.

  • V. Elliott

    I thank God for accepting me back!

  • So many times I’ve ran away and enjoyed idols until they didn’t meet my needs anymore all the while Gods waiting for me to turn back, and I practically run back and beg him to show his face Bc the hole in my soul that can’t be filled up by anything but him is crying for him, for just an ounce of his presence. Just a glimpse of his love. But he doesn’t just give an ounce or a glimpse he gives he all. He gives me all the grace and all the love and reminds me that anytime I seek no matter how far I am away HE WILL show his face he will wrap his arms around me and he will comfort me.
    I can’t help but think that this is what we are suppose to do for others as well, those people who have hurt us, have completely turned their backs on us, we are suppose to love them, again, and again. We are to forgive, constantly, the way Our father does for us. He sets the example and we are to follow.

  • Far to many times in my life I have left God out because I looked for peace, for acceptance, for my needs to be met in all the wrong places. I am so guilty of running ahead of God in my struggles . I do want to get it RIGHT. I seem to have victory one day and then mess up again forgetting far too often that God tells me, " child my grace is sufficient for you" . I will grasp hold of yesterday's verse once again. "as surely as the sun rises, He will appear; He will come to me as the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth."
    I am going to stand in His showers today… I want to get soaking wet….

  • This is something I've been thinking about a lot lately. For me, it's easy to seek God and rely on him when things are going poorly. Where else could I turn? But when life is good, as it has been for me for a long time, and I'm finding success and other people are praising me for the good work I'm doing, it's so hard for me to seek. I want to be the one responsible for my success, I want to be proud of my accomplishments. Turning those blessings into praise and avoiding selfishness and pride is difficult and many people don't even see why being proud of oneself is a sin. I'm grateful to this study for reminding me who should receive the glory.

  • Yesterday my girls and I went to the Art Museum in our city. While enjoying the beautiful pieces, I came across a statue that I couldn't take my eyes off. It was Eve at the moment she realized what she'd done. She was sitting with her waist and head turned, one arm bent and slightly covering her eyes with it's palm out…the snake coiling around her feet. The artist described it as the very moment she realized what she'd done and she was filled with shame and distress. As I looked at her desperate eyes, I felt such sadness. I could absolutely relate to what the artist was trying to convey. The intense shame and sadness, the overwhelming feeling of pain over the situation, of regret. Just as Eve, I have not felt I could bare to face God, to bare His disappointment, to see the pain i have caused when I have sought my own Glory or comfort. I, too, have turned my face in disgust over life decisions. BUT, just as Eve, God's love of me is evident, in my disgust, He seeks me, He speaks to me and He lovingly leads me to follow the consequences of my behavior, which hurts, but refines me, it is a redemptive love. He doesn't want me to remain where I find myself, even as I forget Him in my successes, just as He cursed creation in the Garden, He curses my sin, but He offers such Grace, God never gives up on His plans for me, He is ever faithful, He is never without love for me. ~ B

  • Laurielou123

    So thankful for this study and SRT! Thank you God for your continuous pursuit and undying love!

  • Steph_Lilac

    I am utterly cut up from the reading today. As I was mulling over the scriptures attached to today's devotion I couldn't help but thank God for His amazing grace and mercy. I was Israel, turning from God to worship other gods and moving farther and farther away from Him. Jeremiah 27b-28a says"But in the time of their trouble They will say, 'Arise and save us.' But where are your gods that you have made for yourselves? Let them arise. If they can save you in the time of your trouble;"

    I realized that the things I worshipped could not lift a finger to save me. In all honesty, they were trying to make me commit spiritual suicide. I still stumble and fall but I run back to His altar so fast, that turning away from God has NO chance to set in. In all my ways I acknowledge Him and I bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. This is a proven recipe for staying focused on the Lord. I pray that we gird ourselves with the full armor of God my sisters because in these last days we really don't have the time to be turned away from God's truth. Have a Marvelous Monday!! Xoxox

  • Rebecca LeAnne

    So, so good.

  • Traci Cooley

    So much conviction in these verses. How far do I want to run before I return to the loving arms of my Lord? How many days do I want to wander aimlessly trying to do it all on my own thinking I can handle that because God doesn't need to be bothered with my little stuff. I am done running from the truth and stop wandering in the world looking for answers that are not there to find.

    • Emily

      I hadn’t really thought of wanting to do things on my own as “wandering aimlessly,” but that’s a perfect description. I struggle with giving God control, but the thought of wandering aimlessly appeals to me even less than doing things my own way. Thank you for your words this morning!

  • Where do I put God when I'm in top of the world? Yikes. Not where He should be, that's for sure.

    And the crazy thing is- it's so much easier to give Him glory when things are good than to wait to seek His face when things are really bad and I come back hanging my head in shame, ready to start over for the umpteenth time.

    I pray I'll stop waiting until things are at rock bottom before I run back to God and cling to Him. I want to cling to Him in the good and abundant times too- when He has blessed me abundantly– instead of praising man for them.

  • Stephenie

    For they have turned their back to me,
    and not their face.
    But in the time of their trouble they say,
    ‘Arise and save us!’
    28 But where are your gods
    that you made for yourself?
    Let them arise, if they can save you,
    in your time of trouble;
    for as many as your cities
    are your gods, O Judah.

    The truth of these verses rang loudly this morning. How often do we cling to our "gods" until we know we need the True Living God? May God help us to look to Him always!

  • HUMBLED. HARD PILL TO SWALLOW

  • Kendall_S

    Mulling over these thoughts today from Hosea 5…..

    Do I take seriously God's judgement?

    Where am I still determined to go after filth?

    Have I considered how I am hurting God when I continue to run while he is there patiently waiting for me to return?

    lots to think about…….

    • MeganP

      I like what you ask yourself. ..where am I still going after filth. Lots to thonk about for me too.

  • DVineSpeaks

    I'm thankful that God waited on me, I loved Him from my youth but we weren't intimately attached for a long time. God thank you for delivering me from the pain that nearly destroyed my life and loving me when I almost threw in the towel. God loved me so that he washed me with tender merciy and covered me with grace and now I'm stronger in Him. To you all today this study is encouraging us to lean and depend solely upon the Lord for everything that we need. I wish I could share my full testimony BUT just know this God will always show up on time in the most unexpectant ways and do more than you could ever pray or imagine!!!! Glory to God I'm so so full right now just thanking God my Faither, healer, lover of my soul, my very being I could've died in my mess But God I'm so grateful.

    I pray today, that we as vessels are not ashamed to reach out to the stranger who may be having a moment such as the people of Isreal; that can't see God anymore pass the pain that has been inflicted upon them and we use the Word of Life to plant the seed of healing and restoration into their hearts and minds.

    Be blessed my Sisters in Christ

    • Rebecca Bush

      This thought is so spot on!! Man do WE need grace but we need to be giving it out to others too. This convicts me deep because I need to work on showing grace to others

  • joanne Sher

    Lord, let me keep my face ever turned to you – whether I am in need, in plenty, or somewhere in between.

  • tawnimarie

    Awesome.

    "The seeking was the point all along."

    I find it so, so, very easy to turn away from God, in a sense, when things are going my way. When everyone in the family's health is good, we've got work, food, enough money to sustain us (thank you to our supporters), etc. When there aren't "troubles", it's easy to forget WHO IT IS I SHOULD BE THANKING. I take the "good life" for granted, and sometimes it takes a hardship for me to remember to turn to God and praise Him for how wonderful and easy my life really is.

    My study Bible says "God allows adversity because sometimes that is the only way to get our attention, and it's the only warning we will heed," and, YES. I must, MUST do a better job of staying with God, even when I'm on top of the world.

    Thanks for the conviction, as always. ❤

    (Also, I think we crashed the site earlier, ha! How wonderful is that!?)

  • I heard and felt one word when I read this today: Grace.
    Wow. God’s grace is enough.

  • How often have I turned away from the Lord, my God, because of some stupid thing I've done, then to turn to 'sinful' man???' Yikes!!! Ouch ! What a stab at the heart that is….
    Hosea writes, “Their deeds do not permit them to return to their God. A spirit of prostitution is in their heart; they do not acknowledge the Lord.” (5:4 NIV)….that line right there gave me a fright, my heart skipped a beat for sure….That my deeds, my actions, 'do not permit me…' Scary…'Ah, and as for the next line….my heart shudders….I have never associated myself with prostitution, I have definitely never thought of myself as a prostitute,…but right here in this verse….my worst fears are being revealed to me…..my walking away, my running, my turning away from God and to something other than my God, selling myself to the highest offer of comfort, support, acceptance, friendship, love…etc, for fear of asking the Lord,…again, is, and likened to prostitution….Ouch, ouch,ouch…Oh Lord God, May I, right in this minute, as the reality of how much I have hurt and broken your heart, how much I grieve you, in these actions, of a sin- filled' runner', fall to my knees in repentence…..ashamed of who and what I have become….in the name of living a God guided and worshipping life…, ..Lord, I pray my eyes, now opened….my heart In despair….turn and look to you…seek you, truly seek you….above ALL else….in the Good and the bad…the happy and the sad, the richer and the poorer, whether in sickness and or in health….the lean or the fat….ALL….of my life's dealings, Lord God…May my seeking YOU, be the POINT of my life….for always…..not just for rock bottom….but for all along the way…..
    Lord, Thank you that you had your eye on me, Thank you that You wait, and that Your arms are outstretched, ready for this moment of realization on my part, that you hold me close…reminding and teaching me that Your LOVE is King, and that humbled and in obedience, I can experience and receive YOUR relentless LOVE…..Thank you Lord God, for the many, many chances…..Thank you Lord for everything…..

    Hey there, Sister's, how fast the year is moving forward…., I think though, today, I will slow down….SELAH, (sit, pause)…..and seek the Lord my God….and come to Him in Paise and Thanksgiving…..for the ever outstretched arms, super loaded with Love, Forgiveness, Grace, Mercy… Goodness….God bless your days' Sisters,however you spend it…….don't forget to scatter JOY…..xxx

  • Candacejo

    I cannot begin to count how many times in the last 53 years I have been at rock bottom…AFRAID to cry out to the Lord AGAIN. Because I had lived this scenario so often, I was sure the Lord had marked my name off. There would be no more chances for me.

    But that is just what the enemy wants us to do (and feel!). The mind is his battleground, he wages war there and we are influenced when we LISTEN. We believe the lie, we hear it over and over again and then are convinced there is no hope for us.

    The difference in us today and Israel? They did NOT have the infilling of the Holy Spirit! They didn't have the power of Christ IN them to overcome temptation and to live above sin. Does that mean that Christians with the Holy Ghost do not sin? Of course not, but where they only had the Law we have Grace AND we have Christ IN us to speak to us in His still, quiet voice when we are going astray. If we arm ourselves with the Word, with Prayer and Worship, we can strengthen that inner man (woman) and CAN overcome these weaknesses through the power of God. When we DO fail, we have an advocate, Jesus Christ the Righteous, who forgives and restores. "For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" 1 John 5:4-5

    This scripture reading today shows the great lengths the Lord will go for His people. The patience, the endurance, the long-suffering of God surpasses any sin we may have committed! We must only reach out for Him, come humbly before Him repenting, truly repenting, and then allow Him to mold us and shape us to be the Overcomers He desires for us to be. Kim Walker's "Unstoppable" is PERFECT for this lesson! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pbxRz0AOho

    This was so encouraging to me today. There is HOPE in Jesus Christ! Blessings for a new week and Happy Labor Day! ♥

    • Laurielou123

      Oh Candacejo, thank you for that video! It goes along perfectly with our study. Thank you Jesus for you unrelenting love!!!

    • Carolyn

      Thank you for sharing this music! What a perfect fit. It blesses me so this morning!

    • mazmagi54 (Peggy)

      Excellent Nanette … so true … no matter how many years we stumble … this brings HOPE! Still seeking and pressing on …and UNSTOPPABLE is perfect, just downloaded this last week by the leading of the Holy Spirit and it is so perfect. Weak (so weak) but strengthened in Jesus and forgiven and victorious through Jesus Christ! So thankful for His pursuit of us in love and His grace supercedes all our imperfectness and struggles as only HE can and does, making ashes and broken pieces whole and complete … thanks so much for arming us in His power and His Word! Love to you and many blessings flowing right back at ya' … Peggy

  • Hosea has been a revelation for me for the past week. There is one particular sin that has wrapped its claws around me that I cannot shake. Time and time again I succumb to its temptations, feeling guilty for being so weak. The next morning I give up and cry and wonder, "what is the point? Why should I try to read the Bible and study and pray and live by Your example? I cannot live up to that because I know I will crash-hard. It's easier to give up".

    But feeling weak is the point. "The seeking was the point all along". I'm not suppose to battle this alone, to prove how strong and tough I am, because I will not succeed. I need Jesus and His armor of Love. I have learned that He believes that I am worth it. And with and for Him, I'm going to give it my all.

    SheReadsTruth has truely been a blessing to me and I cannot thank this community enough. So thank you, and God bless you.

    • Amanda Bible Williams

      Caitlyn – I happened to check in on the post before I headed off to bed and saw your comment. I just want to encourage you in what you’ve said here because I think it’s so true. Our weakness is exactly where God meets us- He is not surprised by our weakness and our sin, but He looks through all that muck and sees His child, the daughter created in His image and redeemed by the blood of His perfect Son. It truly is IN our weakness that He is most glorified. 2 Corinthians 12:9 is a verse I heard so often over the years, but it has come to mean some much to me in the last few years — the years where my weakness and failure seem to shine so much brighter than any “good stuff” I can muster up — “’My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” BOAST in our weakness. That’s crazy! But it’s God’s Word. Our weakness is a conduit for God’s power. Amazing. Sending you love tonight, friend. xo, Amanda

      • tawnimarie

        Ladies! Stop making me cry. ;)

      • Shelley

        I am so proud of you for trusting that even in your weakness, God will meet you there. Thankful, as I know you are, that we have a Father and Jesus our brother to run to time and time again when weakness overtakes us. You are daily seeking Him in your weakness–and that is, indeed, when He will run to you with open arms! Prayers for a blessed day feeling His love!

    • Candacejo

      He DOES believe you are worth it Caitlyn! We cannot let the enemy convince us that we have sinned too many times and there is no more hope…that is a lie from hell. The Lord is more merciful than we can ever comprehend, Israel is a great example of His long-suffering. Blessings to you today as you cling to His Word. ♥

    • tawnimarie

      Ahhh! This brought tears. ❤❤❤

      You are so right! "But feeling weak is the point. "The seeking was the point all along". I'm not suppose to battle this alone, to prove how strong and tough I am, because I will not succeed. I need Jesus and His armor of Love."

      I know how you feel — I battle a particular sin — and I have been really convicted by Hosea, too. Thank you for sharing. ❤

    • Kristi James

      Yes! I'm reading this book called Extravagabt Grace that talks about this – if God's goal, if the work of the spirit, is to create "better" Christians, it's not working! At least, not in me! But if his work in us is to move us to rely on him more fully, well then yes, I'd say the spirit is pretty darn effective in my whiny, untrusting, uncomfortable, completely loved heart.

    • Onfaith

      Caitlyn, you nailed it. "feeling weak is the point." If we never fell, would we ever feel the need for God? My husband and I were just speaking last night about our life prior to his "exchange" and prior to my better understanding of Grace. He often feels sad for his sin in our marriage and asked if I would have preferred never marrying him. I always remind him that our adversities, my sin as well, drew me closer to God and allowed opportunities for me to see God work miraculously in my life. I have been gifted things, in this, I would otherwise never have seen or understood because of our troubles. Would I love all of that without the muck? Sure, but I don't think it's possible. Human nature is to feel that we can do things on our own, when we save money and we say, "WE did it", we receive a promotion, birth a baby, conquer a problem and we think, "I did that"……. So often we forget the God part in our successes. We forget that it's His grace that afforded us our luxuries, our successes, our benefits. That it's His strength that provide what we need to overcome and that it's His prompting that pushes us over the finish line. You know, the cliche, you can't have the rainbow without the storm. :)

      Caitlyn, you've got it. He loves you so greatly that He does not want to leave you where you are. He will use this process as redemptive process for His glory. Don't give up, He is with you as you battle and you will be so gifted in this process by His love. Saying prayers that God cover you greatly in this, that He lift you to a height in overcoming this you wouldn't have perceived possible, that you feel His great compassion in the process. Prayers that He surround you with supportive people and that He daily speak to you about His plans for your life through this. That He allow you to look in the mirror and see His beautiful daughter, a temple for His spirit, Christ Himself. Prayers that you take His hand in this and that you know to your core, He will never let go! Love to you sister! ~ B

    • Lucy

      Remember too that ” we are more than conquerors through him who loves us” Romans 8:37. And another “montra” I like is Philippians 4:13. “I can do all things though Christ who strengthens me” hope that helps. Blessings.

    • Caitlyn

      Another encouraging verse: "Though I fall, I will rise again. Though I sit in darkness, the Lord will be my light" Micah 7:8 :) Thank you all for your kind and thoughtful words of wisdom.

    • Shelby

      I feel like I'm in the same position as you! And yes! "The seeking was the point all along."

    • Domini

      I just prayed for you Caitlyn. I understand what it's like when a sin has hold on your life. And yes, feeling weak is the point. The cause to make us turn our eyes to him. I need to remember that more often.

    • Sarah VandaVeer

      Caityln. I completely completely understand you. I have the same problem. I have two sin issues that wrap together perfectly, and I feel the same exact way. I blog about it at ficklefaithfulness.com I'm not trying to be tacky, I just think we could relate to each other as Christian sisters. There is always hope. There is always hope. God has not given up on us! Thanks for your vulnerability.

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