I was running errands with Starbucks as my final destination, where I’d settle in for a few uninterrupted hours of work (goodness, do I miss my East Nashville coffee shops!). I listened to the first several chapters of Hosea on audio while I drove as prep for the reading plan I would edit that afternoon.
Reading the Bible when it’s your job can be tricky. Sometimes I approach it like an assignment—almost like a textbook—and sometimes I approach it as a girl who just wants and needs to hear from God. Most times, because I’ve never been great at drawing lines, I approach it as both. But this particular day, listening to Hosea in the van, I had my work hat on. I was listening as a refresher, as a jump start on the work I had to do.
Maybe that’s why it knocked me down flat—I didn’t see it coming.
I don’t know if it was my physical fatigue or my depleted emotional and spiritual state (I get tired, you guys), or maybe it was the calming voice of the ESV audio guy (love him). Whatever it was, I lost it. I listened, incredulous at what I heard, and I kept rewinding to hear certain parts over and over. I didn’t make it all the way through the book on my drive, but by the time I pulled into the Starbucks parking lot I was weeping. I felt crushed and helpless, and I felt whole and seen and known.
I was completely bowled over (as Ann Voskamp might say) at the ridiculous and relentless love of God.
I went into the coffee shop, ordered something highly caffeinated, got situated at “my” table, and texted my friend/partner/business wife Raechel something along the lines of this:
“There comes a point in our relationship with Christ where we can’t go any further until we face our sin and shame head-on. That’s what Hosea does for me—it causes me to say things out loud to God that I don’t want to say, and then forces me to stand and listen as He says back to me, ‘I love you, I love you, I love you.’”
Then I admitted crying like a baby.
Repentance. That’s what this book is about for me. And I don’t know about you, but I NEED to repent. I need to come clean with the Lord and remember how He loves me, remember how He knows me even when I don’t know myself. I need to start back at square one of the Gospel and say, “Ok, Lord. I’m a friggin’ mess and here are all the reasons why. Are you sure you don’t want out?” Here’s the craziest part—He never, ever, ever wants out.
I invite you to come along with me and tens of thousands of other women (and some men!) as we read the book of Hosea together. You can follow along (for about 12 cents a day) on the She Reads Truth app, or you can follow along absolutely free (wheeee!) on the She Reads Truth site or via email.
I don’t always read along with each day of each plan (because we’re always reading/studying/writing a upcoming plans at the same time), but I’m committing to read along with this one.
I need to remember, I need to repent, and I need to be received all over again. I’d love it if you’d join me.