The God Chase
by Charmain Hibberd
Marketing Assistant (Writer), CBN Europe
Despite infidelity, sin and idolatry, God still takes us back. He is not a God to be mocked but when we sincerely offer our hearts in repentance, God does not turn His back. How beautiful to have a Saviour who will never give up on us, no matter how much we fail.
There are some things that just stay with you, aren’t there? Maybe it’s a powerful film, or an insightful documentary or a moving song. For me, it’s a book.
Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers is up there in my top 10 books of all time. I read it from cover to cover in a very short space of time and it has remained with me ever since. I won’t give too much away in case you decide to read it yourself, but let’s just say it is a fictional narrative based on the book of Hosea and it is one of my absolute favourites.
If you are not familiar with the book of Hosea, it follows Hosea’s relationship with Gomer, a promiscuous woman who God calls Hosea to marry. The book goes on to parallel God’s love for us and Hosea’s love for Gomer. Though we – and Gomer – are adulterous and idolatrous, God graciously pursues us. He gives us the eternal offering of His forgiveness and love.
What I love most about God is that He never gives up on us. Even when we become Christians and decide to follow Jesus all the days of our lives, we still slip up and make mistakes – don’t we?
We are far from perfect and remain in need of His grace and forgiveness. Yet, every time we fail, God never stops loving us. He chases after us with His goodness and sets our lives back on solid ground. What more could we ask for? We get to live in freedom and forgiveness and the security of knowing that our God will never abandon or forsake us.
This, however, is not a license to disobey or rebel. It surely should give us all the more passion to live a life free from the ties that bind and follow God’s ways.
The God chase is one of a love rooted in eternity, one that will never let us go.
The Pursuit Of Our Hearts
Something that strikes me from the book of Hosea is how flagrant the sin of the people is, yet how God chooses to pursue our hearts and claim us back over and over again. The sheer number of times the people stray versus the number of times God chases after them is mind blowing. I don’t know anyone who has the capacity to forgive like God does.
The sin of our current times may look different to burnt offerings to idols and sacrificing to Baals but we can all be guilty of idolatry – putting things before God and His Kingship. Yet time and time again, God draws us with his unfailing love to a place of repentance, then chooses to forgive us and wipe the slate clean. He chases after us, leaving the 99 for the 1, until He has rescued us from ourselves and brought us back into the flock.
My point I suppose is that the God chase is not some playful, childish game of kiss chase. It is a passionate and deep picture of how God refuses to give up on His beloved, no matter how much we hurt His heart with our disloyalties. The God chase is one of a love rooted in eternity, one that will never let us go.
‘I will heal their apostasy;
I will freely love them,
For my anger will have turned from him.’
(Hosea 14:4 CSB)