Life catch up: school, school, and more school. All of life is school when you’re taking 18 hours! (Welcome to senior year, y’all). It’s crazy busy and exhausting. Pretty much sums up this season of life, I suppose.
In the midst of it all, I’ve been keeping up with my She Reads Truth studies. These studies were a spiritual life saver this summer at home. Though I was often too exhausted to do much Bible study, I tried to keep up with them this summer. I was almost always successful. I’m still pretty successful during school, even if it means I’m reading at 1am in bed using the SRT app (which is awesome. if you haven’t checked it out, you should).
And then they decided to do Hosea. Right as school was starting.
After my friend introduced me to Redeeming Love (which is based off Hosea- and is a topic I could write an entire post about itself!), I’ve had some interest in studying it, but I’ve been kinda hesitant. If you haven’t read it, Hosea is an intense book of the Bible. I’d never studied it in-depth for this reason. it was so hard for me to study, hard for me to understand– especially at the beginning of my most hectic semester to date. As someone that didn’t grow up reading and learning scripture, reading these stories (especially Old Testament) are a bit scarier for me. SRT makes reading these books and stories I’m not familiar with easier, but still… it’s tough.
I learned a lot I needed to learn, even things I didn’t want to learn. I was challenged, even when I didn’t want to be, about things I didn’t necessarily want to be challenged about.
And I was reminded of so, so much that I needed to hear.
“The book of Hosea is not about Hosea, it is about God’s relentless pursuit of an undeserving people.” (Day 1)
Even when I run. (Especially when I run).
Even when I’m a hot mess.
Even when I fail and flounder.
Even when I don’t want to trust or follow Him, when I’d rather do things my way.
Even then, He still wants me.
He knows me. He knows me well enough to know I’ll run and keep running. He knows my messes and my struggles and my story. And yet, He still pursues me. He chose me to be His.
I will never understand it. I will always wonder why.
“The chasm of sin grows wider and we run faster, but our God changes not. He is still sovereign, even as we flee.” (Day 5)
“We are sinful. He is steadfast.
We are fearful. He is faithful.
We are broken. He binds up.
We cherish idols. He cherishes us.
His love and affection toward us do not change, no matter the depth of our sin.” (Day 5)
“Whether it’s the first time you’ve run willingly out of God’s precious protection that comes from obedience, or it’s the five millionth time, the Lord doesn’t stand unmoved by your genuine return.” (Day 8)
How unfathomable is it that He constantly pursues me, loves me so much that He wants to have a relationship with me? No matter what I do, or where I am, or how far I run… His pursuit and love for me stay the same.
He wants ME! He pursues ME! He loves ME! And that will never change.
It’s amazing how much your life can change when you’re being pursued and loved so deeply.
Earlier this week, we had Ellie Holcomb speak and perform during chapel. It’d take me an entire post to relay her whole beautiful message, but she spoke a bit about being fully known and fully loved. It’s a hard idea for me to wrap my brain around- the idea that God sees my mess, my screwups, and my failures, and pursues me anyway. But He does. Because if anything else, He is a God that fully knows His children for who He made them to be, and fully loves us in spite of our mess.
The book of Hosea and God’s constant pursuit of us teaches me that no matter who we fully are or what we have done, He loves us enough to chase after us, and lavishly extend His grace and love to us when we finally return. Hosea teaches me that His pursuit isn’t because of what we’ve done or haven’t done- it’s because He simply loves us and wants us to be loved by Him. No matter how far or how much I run, He will still be waiting, still be pursuing, and still loving me. And to me, that’s pretty amazing.
Thank you, Hosea, for reminding me of the depth of His love.
Thank you, Lord, for the running and the returning back to where my heart truly belongs.