HOSEA 6:1-3: “Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up. After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live before him. Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.” (ESV)
OBSERVATION: Have I ever been stubborn? Survey says – YES! I hold a PHD from the School of Hard Knocks. My mother used to say – “I guess you always have to learn things the hard way!” That has been much of the story of my life – but my story is changing! As I look over my life I can now see how I could have avoided a lot of heartache and disappointment if I simply would have listened to those who were older than me and followed their godly advice.
Israel and Judah were a stubborn people. The Lord had sent his messengers and prophets to call them to repentance. Did they listen? Survey says – NO! They continued in their stubbornness and sin. This resulted in their judgment and captivity. Yet, even in the midst of their judgment God’s call to mercy is extended. “Come, let us return to the Lord, for he has torn us, that he may heal us, he has struck us down, and he will bind us up…” God’s mercy is always extended – even in the midst of His judgment.
It is no different in our lives. We all have made bad decisions in life. We all are guilty of being stubborn. If we are honest, a lot of the struggles and difficulties we face in life are not the attack of the enemy, they are the result of these bad choices. Yet, even in the midst of the harvest of our bad choices God’s mercy calls out to us – “Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up.”
The Father expressed His heart for us when He sent His only begotten Son to die in our place. Hosea speaks prophetically of this coming day in his call to Israel and Judah – “After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live before him.” Jesus died for our sins and for all of our bad choices. He lay in the grave for two days – but on the third day He rose again from the dead. His resurrection broke the power of our sin, the power of our bad choices, and the power of death and judgment that loomed over us. Through faith in Jesus Christ we now have the power to break the cycle of stubbornness and to learn to walk after the Spirit!
This new life in the Spirit leads us in a new direction. Whereas stubbornness lead us to sin and death, the Holy Spirit leads us to life and peace. Hosea declares – “Let us know; let us press on to know the Lord; his going out is sure as the dawn; he will come to us as the showers, as the spring rains that water the earth.” There are showers and springs of refreshing available to us each day as we abide in the Word of God, come before Him in believing prayer, and follow Him in obedience to the Holy Spirit’s leading. There is also godly counsel from others who are walking this path of life to help keep us on the straight and narrow way – and from returning to our former pathway of stubbornness.
Lord, forgive me for the times when I have stubbornly pursued my own will and desires. I know that Your plans are always to bring me life and peace. Give me the grace to know You, to press on each day and seek Your will for my life. Give me a humble heart to receive counsel and instruction from godly men and women who have walked with You and traveled this path before me. Lead me into Your springs of refreshing today I pray!
In Jesus Name!