I can relate more to today’s chapter more than you think, and perhaps you can too.
When my heart was so hardened toward God, the father I ran away, the more blackened it became.
At the time, I felt it was impenetrable.
Having grown up in church and living in close fellowship with God, only to stop attending church amidst a move overseas, not seeking Him as I should, and adjusting to challenges of life after moving home, I thought I had crossed a line of no return.
I knew better, and since I knew better, I should have done better.
I should have run right back to him.
Strangely, instead of bringing me back to God, it kept me running full speed ahead in the opposite direction.
I believed the lie that I couldn’t come back.
That I had to keep going the other way because that was the only way. God couldn’t take me back after once living so close to him and then falling away.
Have you ever ran like this?
I relate to this passage because my heart was not pursuing God or his desires for my life.
I was pursuing my desires for my life, and they were horrid.
Thank God, in spite of me, His hand was still over me, even when I thought it wasn’t.
There was still hope.
Just like verse two, there is still hope.
In spite of the poor decisions the Israelites made, there was still a chance to make things right.
There’s coming a day when the chances will no longer be available, but as long as we have today and this moment, there’s still hope.
Do not delay in turning your heart over to Him in repentance. We are in such a beautiful period of his grace.
I am so thankful he waited on me.
I’m so thankful He opened my eyes once again to His truth.
Hosea tells us the Lord bends down to gently feed his people, and helps us learn to walk in Him. What a beautiful, tender picture of a loving God.
I sure had no problem running from Him but walking in Him again crippled me.
Yet, in his rich mercy, the Lord of Hosts bent down and took my arms and helped me take those few wobbly steps again.
And now I run the race before me. I pray you do too.
Repentance does not always come easy for a hardened heart. Thank God for his Spirit and ability to move within us.
We wrap up this chapter knowing that the Israelites repented and made good on their covenant to God.
While our stories may seem completely different from theirs, I can’t help but feel we’re not so different after all.
Thanks for joining me on this journey through Ezra. I hope you’ll keep checking in for more Friday devos on a variety of topics.
Have a wonderful weekend! It’s supposed to pour Saturday. We can’t get rid of our OU tickets. Everyone is selling them. Im thrilled about going and sitting in the rain.
Check in Monday!