"Therefore I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her." (Hosea 2:14)
This scripture was once my small spring of a water in a Texas desert. A summer and fall that had stripped the earth of all moisture had also stripped my heart of all softness too. I begged for mercy and begged for God to overlook my sin, and plodded on as Gomer, straight into the desert of my soul. And now I see it wasn't me as much as it was Him too. Taking me out, away, stripping, into the wilderness where nights are cold and everything else void.
Today, I wake with that slightly ominous feeling. It could be the cloud cover. It could be the panicked email about a tropical storm threatening to alter our vacation plans. It could be the wishing that I had held my tongue, or the wishing that I hadn't.
These mornings, when I seem to wake rocking with the earth, feeling the aches and pains of something meant to be beautiful, gone so terribly wrong, I'm reminded of this scripture.
I can't put my finger on it lately, this gnawing edge to my thoughts, heart, words, plans. It all seems backwards. During the day, I feel the darkness and at night, by light of the moon and stars, I'm reminded that the heaviness is just a facade. That the real sky is vast, the Light is broad and never ending. Before the sun heats up this earth, I'm remembering that to walk into a desert isn't always a sign of being lost. Sometimes it means that you're about to be wooed. Allured. Spoken to with kindness.
By day, I'm counting hours, minutes, to-do items, due items, and pieces of cereal that have crusted to the floor. This pull feels great and I wonder how to keep this pace up.
By night, I'm breathing in the still, quiet air. Most of the strings that pull on my marionette arms have ceased for the day. The ones that really seem to matter pull on my heart as I'm resting my hands and feet.
And I wait on the dusty ground for the sun to finish its 9 p.m. blush. On a blanket made of cotton under a blanket made of stars. The "hymn of light". It was under the stars that Jacob wrestled. Under these stars that Ruth moved toward Boaz's tent. Where David watched the flock. Under these stars that Jesus prayed. Under these stars I whisper gratitudes and beggar's words.
"Maybe this was made for me. For lying on my back in the middle of a field.
Maybe that's a selfish thought. Or maybe there's a Loving God."
(Sara Groves, Maybe There's a Loving God)