Hosea is a prophet who calls the people to repentance. Yet Hosea 11: 3-4 presents us with an image of a tender God who loves the people.
Yet it was I who taught Ephraim to walk,
who took them by the arms,
but they did not know that I healed them.
I drew them with the cords of human kindness,
with leading strings of love;
I fostered them like those who raise an infant to their cheeks
and stoop down to feed them.
The next to the last line can also be translated as “ I became for them as one who eases the yoke upon their neck.”
What is the image of God we project with our lives?
Do we project a harsh and severe God who delights in the punishment of evildoers? Do we present a God who secures our position and gives us security by his powerful hand, though usually accompanied by our weapons of mass destruction? Do we seek a God who our ratifies our prejudices and is “on our side”?
Or do we live as children of the tender God – raising infants to our cheeks, stooping down and feeding them.
The fate of ten of thousands of unaccompanied minors from northern Central America in the US is heavy on my heart. Will people in the US raise them to their cheeks and stop down and feed them – or will they reject them?
May the example of our tender God guide the people and leaders of the US.