Monday, February 16, 2009

Playing the Field

 You remember that phrase, "playing the field"? People used it for individuals who would date multiple people at one time. It's a little old schooly for people around my age, but I've heard it. It's funny though, many of us may have never heard the phrase, but sadly most of us do it. I don't mean we go around falling instantly in love with everyone we meet. I mean that we are always playing the field on God, seeking lovers that we deem more satisfying than Him.

Ever read Hosea? Definitely one of my favs from the Old Testament. It's this story of a guy named Hosea who's a single old prophet dude. Well one day God tells Him to go out and marry a harlot, a professional player of the field, and have field children. Well, as ridiculous as it must have sounded, Hosea obeyed and married the lady of the night. They had children of the night. And during their marriage, Hosea's wife constantly leaves to play the field yet again. But every time as God commands, Hosea goes back and redeems her.

Sounding familiar? It should. We're all ladies and gentlemen of the night. We play the field looking for lovers to satisfy us, when it is truly only God who completely satisfies. Know why? Because as Tobymac put it, we were made to love Him. When we try to love other things more, we're miserable and left desperate from failed attempts at love. Whether we try and find it in money, clothes, accolades, or simply love from this world, we can gain it all but we'll do nothing but lose our souls in the process. We ignore and seek others and God patiently waits for us to love Him first again. Look at the words He says to Hosea in 3:1, "Go again, love a woman who is loved by another man and is an adulteress, even as the Lord loves the children of Israel, though they turn to other gods and loves cakes of raisin."

In the same way Hosea continues to love his wife though she's constantly unfaithful to him, God does the same with us. I don't know about this cakes of raisin stuff, but we do exchange the great fulfillment found it God for menial things found here that will never truly satisfy. Our playing of the field is useless and the game is never won. It gets old, it gets tiring. Aren't you tired? Thankfully, God promises rest for the weary, if only we turn our hearts to Him. As Augustine so rightfully said universally for all mankind, "You have made us for Yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in You."

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