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As he says in Hosea: “I will call them ‘my people’ who are not my people; and I will call her ‘my loved one’ who is not my loved one,”Romans 9:25 (NIV)

“I can’t love them after what they did to me. This was too much. How can I love someone I can’t trust anymore? I can forgive anything, but infidelity? Not this time. It’s over”

These words are said time and time again. Not word for word of course but in essence one of the hardest things to forgive is when someone cheats us, lies to us or breaks a vow to us. It attacks the very foundation of any relationship.

That’s why grace is so amazing to me. None of us would find it easy to love someone who we knew to be unfaithful. In fact few are able to do that. Yet that is exactly what God did for us.

The prophet Hosea was called by God to bring the word of restoration toIsrael. God often used life examples to bring others to himself. The Old Testament prophets were known to do some pretty outlandish things to draw attention to them so that they could draw attention to the message God had for them.

Hosea was no exception. Hosea was married to a woman who left him to openly live with other men. God sent him to find her and bring her back to him as his beloved. A tall order for anyone in any time, to love someone who you know will scoff at that love and go back to a life of adultery.

The family life of Hosea is a startling reminder to us that God’s relationship with us is based on his love for us and not on our ability to ‘love him back’. He knew when he chose us that we’d fail him, but he loved us anyway.

Human love can’t comprehend that. Our concept of love is built on the ability of the loved one to be able to return that love to the giver of love. We, in our human condition are unable to do that. But, as the Apostle Paul writes, “Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.” The free gift of salvation is given us with full knowledge what we are unable to return that love and are completely undeserving of it.

Regardless of where you are in life, no matter how many times you’ve failed him. Your Father loves you and wants you to return to him.

PRAYER: Father there are so many times I’ve failed you. So many times I’ve sought after other gods, other things to satisfy this longing in my soul. Forgive me for my waywardness. Thank you for your unselfish love for me in spite of my ability to return that love. Amen.


The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed. Psalm 34:18 (NLT)

Tragedy brings people together. Earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes and the devastation of conflict or famine awaken a part of us that says, “I’ll help you”. Those motivate to help aren’t limited to social class, race or ethnic groups or religious orientation. In fact, sometimes those who are the most financially insecure are the ones who will give more (percentage-wise) than the wealthy.

All of that is good, but sometimes the biggest hurts people experience are the ones where they suffer alone. A broken heart doesn’t show itself in public. We’ve learned how to hide that behind a false smile, and various activities like drugs, new relationships, political and social action or even religion. Some people spend their entire lives doing ‘things’ to try to cure the pain of a broken heart.

Perhaps one of the hardest things to deal with in relation to a broken heart is that we often suffer alone. Oh, we have friends and neighbors who bring food and comfort during times of mourning and illness. There’s often community and government help to rebuild houses and businesses destroyed by natural disaster. But while that may help soothe the pain, it doesn’t cure the pain.

All the food and all the human comfort and all the financial support in the world won’t heal a broken heart. That’s where Jesus comes in. Well meaning friends and compassionate governments can restore physical property, but only Jesus can come alongside you and completely understand your pain. He may not remove the obstacles in your life, but he can give strength to endure in the battle.

It was Jesus who stood beside the mom who’d lost her daughter. It was Jesus who wept over the death of a dear friend. It was Jesus who stood by the desperate father of a demon-possessed, seizure stricken little boy. It was Jesus who brought hope to the woman at the well, a victim of broken relationships, who’d not only had five husbands, but after five divorces she could no longer take the chance of failing again.  It was Jesus who provided the food for over 5,000 hungry men, women and children. He calmed storms, gave hope to the crippled and restored those victimized by religious intolerance.

What is your struggle today? What pain are you hiding because no one else understands? Jesus Christ promises to come along side you. He understands your pain like no one else. He alone can bring peace in the midst of your storm.

PRAYER: Dear Jesus. Although I’m smiling on the outside for the world to see, my soul aches today. No one understands how I feel. I’m afraid to share my true feelings with those around me for fear of being misunderstood. Thank you for understanding me. Comfort me in my distress. In your name I pray, Amen.

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