When the Lord first began speaking to Israel through Hosea, he said to him, “Go and marry a prostitute, so that some of her children will be conceived in prostitution. This will illustrate how Israel has acted like a prostitute by turning against the Lord and worshiping other gods.” Hosea 1:2 (NLT)
Hosea was written in whacky period of ancient history about 750 years before Christ. After King David and his son Solomon, the small kingdom of Israel had been broken up in a civil war. The southern kingdom was called Judah and their kings followed the lineage of King David. The northern kingdom continued to call themselves Israel and their throne was occupied by anyone who could plot, assassinate or politically maneuver themselves into the position.
There are two things that I love about Hosea. First, God told Hosea to marry a prostitute and I love to imagine how that conversation went over with his parents.
“God told you WHAT??!”
Hosea stands as an eternal reminder that God does not fit inside a box of our own finite cultural, social or political sensibilities. God is not subject to the limits of our own definition of propriety. In fact, the only limits God fits are those He has ordained for Himself.
Second, I love the way God made Hosea’s very life became an object lesson. His marriage to Gomer became a metaphor for God’s “marriage” to the idolatrous and therefore adulterous nation of Israel. Hosea’s poor children became metaphor’s for God’s message to Israel. The Great Creator as master artist turned Hosea’s life into a work of performance art.
I think God does the same with my life and yours.
How interesting to think of our very own life journeys being a metaphor for what God is doing. It’s why I love history. There are lessons, eternal spiritual lessons, to be learned from each person’s story. A few days ago I asked the question “What’s your story?” Today, I’m asking the same question for a second time with a different twist:
What is the story God is telling through your life?
(Note: Those following along on a chapter-a-day may wonder why we haven’t finished the book of Psalms. Because Psalms is 150 chapters long, I’ve opted to break it up a bit so as not to get fatigued with it. Psalms is broken up into five distinct sections or “books.” The first book ends with Psalm 41 which we walked through yesterday. We’ll pick back up again with the second section in the near future.)