Daily Devotion 01 July 2020
Hosea 11:1, 3-4 ‘God’s Compassion Despite Israel’s Ingratitude’
1 When Israel was a child, I loved him, and out of Egypt I called my son. 3 It was I who taught [the tribe of] Ephraim to walk, I took them up in my arms; but they did not know that I healed them. 4 I led them with cords of human kindness, with bands of love. I was to them like those who lift infants to their cheeks. I bent down to them and fed them.
Many times in the Bible God’s love for us is compared to the love that a mother has for her children. This beautiful passage in Hosea talks of God in maternal terms, teaching his children to walk, cradling them in his arms and feeding them. He is bound to his children with cords of love and ties of tenderness.
Some years ago, I was fortunate to go on a brief safari in Kenya and saw lots of animals in the wild. What I remember particularly was the amazing tenderness of the mothers towards their young. We saw a huge lumbering elephant, with a baby so new that its cord was still attached and the mother was caressing the infant infinitely delicately with her trunk. Lionesses, dangerous hunters feared and avoided by the other animals, were licking and grooming their cubs with great tenderness. The monkeys, leaping about with their babies clinging tightly to their stomachs, though not always gentle with them, were very protective of them whenever danger approached.
The care of mother for infant, throughout God’s creation, and especially in the human race, is a reflection of God’s love for us. Wonderfully and amazingly, God touches us with tenderness in the same way. God protects us in time of danger.
God cares for each one of us and his hand is always active in our lives, sustaining and healing us, even when we don’t realize it.
Loving God, we worship and praise you.
You created each one of us in your image, we were known to you even before we were born and you love every one of your children. We cherish your gifts to us and thank you – for life, for breath, for loving and sharing, for everything that you give us.
You care for us in all our needs, with a love that sees past our flaws and imperfections, a love that accepts us as we are. For all these things we offer our grateful thanks.
We turn towards you now with trust and hope as we pray for our world at this time.
We lift to you in prayer all who are affected by the pandemic virus.
We pray that you pour down your healing power upon the sick and bring comfort to those who mourn. Give courage, strength and wisdom we pray to those on the frontline, and a strong sense of purpose to all keyworkers. Help us each to see how and where we are needed and to recognize our own responsibilities.
Enfold us all, O Lord, and the whole of your creation, in the light of your love. All these things we ask in Jesus name. Amen.
Reflection and Prayer © 2020 Ann Caffyn.
Image freely available online.
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