Do you remember when you stood face-to-face with your spouse and, with genuine conviction and intention, proclaimed your love for them by vowing to remain faithful to them through thick or thin, richer or poorer, until death pulls you apart? Can you still see the look in their eyes as they lovingly gazed back at you? Can you feel the joy and happiness you had as you heard those words spoken to you?
Unfortunately we live in a world dominated by reality. Reality says we won’t always chose to love each other with full commitment. We are often lured away to our own fleshly desires, regardless of how our actions impact on the one we stood across from and vowed to put first. Hosea, like many of us, experienced the disappointment of living with someone who was sin-cursed. Our 3rd “Love is…” introduces us to the reality of living with our spouse and ourselves.
Love can be PAINFUL (Hosea 3:1-2)
Gomer deserted Hosea. She chose another lover. She left a mess behind her, not only for Hosea but also for her 3 children. Her desire for self and sin was greater than her love for her husband and family. She exchanged the greater for the lesser. I can only imagine how Hosea felt as he watched her leave. The waves of confusion, frustration, anger, hurt, and sadness must have been overwhelming!
Despite God’s great love for us and His unwavering commitment toward us we chose to love another instead of Him. We prostituted ourselves to another- self. We rejected Him, laughed at Him, and nailed Him to a cross. He was left in pain with a huge mess to clean up. Our sinful rejection of Him doesn’t just affect us, it stains generation after generation as sin rules in our life. Paul says “love suffers long” for a reason! (I Corinthians 13)
Love can be painful. To believe anything else would be living in a fantasy world. I have been hurt by the one I love. I have also hurt the one I love. Love isn’t always euphoric bliss and happiness. Love is a choice we make to commit to someone despite the painful times.
Questions to think about:
1) Have I experienced pain in my relationship?
2) When did I last cause my spouse to experience pain?
3) What has been the root cause or issues with my lack of love?
4) What can you do to address the root cause of your lack of love for your spouse?