Let us acknowledge the Lord; let us press on to acknowledge him. As surely as the sun rises, he will appear; he will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth. (Hosea 6:3)
As I practice my faith, I feel constantly compelled to “acknowledge the Lord.” I feel called to acknowledge God as Lord of my life. I don’t shout my acknowledgement from the rooftops or street corners; I am more private than that. But, I strive daily to acknowledge to myself that God is the center, author, and driver of my life. Unfortunately, while I acknowledge this understanding to myself, I don’t acknowledge it to Him. I feel this is where I fall short.
As a mother, I think of my three children every day. They are young adults, off on their own. They live productive, happy lives. They go about their days filled with activities, jobs, and friends. I’m sure they think of me often, but maybe not all day, every day. So, when they reach out to me, I am always thrilled. I know they love me. I know they know I love them. But, to confirm our shared love by acknowledging it, affirms it. Cements it.
When I think about my relationship with my children, I think about God the Father’s relationship with me. As mother to my children, I eagerly search the crowd for them, when I’m waiting to meet up with them. I quickly answer the phone, when I see it is one of them calling. Because they are grown and on their own, not with me every day, I am always excited to hear from them, see them, call them. I believe this is how God is with me—I am grown, living a fulfilled life with work, friends, family, and activities. However, God is always eager to interact with me: He searches the crowd for me; He’s quick to answer when I “call;” He is always excited to hear from me when I choose to acknowledge Him.
In the NIV version, Hosea exhorts us to “press on to acknowledge him.” The New English Translation (NET) exhorts us to “let us acknowledge him! Let us seek to acknowledge the Lord!” This directive to press on together with the NET’s exclamation captures Hosea’s urgency for us to acknowledge God, our Lord and Savior. Hosea doesn’t leave it there—he goes on to remind us that, when we acknowledge God, “He will appear” (NIV) and “respond to us as surely as the arrival of dawn or the coming of rains in early spring.”(NET)
How comforting and refreshing is this knowledge! Just as I eagerly scan the crowd looking for my children or quickly pick up the phone when they call, God does this with me! I am His precious daughter, and He is thrilled when I acknowledge Him.
In the Christian calendar, Lent is the chance I am given to reset and emerge refreshed, perhaps even develop a new habit (some think it takes 21 days to develop a new habit, so Lent offers nearly twice the opportunity). In these 40 days, I’m trying to develop the new habit of letting God know He is as important to me as He lets me know I am to Him—to heed Hosea’s call and appear before God as surely as he appears before me.
Appointed readings for today: Hosea 6:1-6, Psalm 51:15-20, Luke 18:9-14