"Come, let us return to the Lord:
for he has torn us, that he may heal us;
he has struck us down, and he will bind us up.
After two days he will revive us;
on the third day he will raise us up,
that we may live before him.
Let us know;
let us press on to know the Lord;
his going out is sure as the dawn;
he will come to us as the showers,
as the spring rains that water the earth."
~ Hosea 6:1-3God declares himself to us in two ways: through His word (both written, and the Word made flesh) and in His creation; and it is through His creation, specifically springtime, that I am gently reminded of His word of hope, of newness, of redemption. The cold hardness of our hearts begins to warm and soften under the work of his sun and soft rain, and there begins to stir the hope of seed laid dormant. Dare we hope for life?Sometimes, however, the workings of the Lord are not so soft and gentle, and he tears us as a plowshare tears fallow ground. He strikes us down as a gardener prunes his vines. But, he does these things that he may heal us; that he may cause us to grow in the way that is best.
If you note, though, in verse 2, the Shepherd of our souls was first the Lamb that was torn and struck down in order to rise again; in order to defeat sin and death, in order to bring us out of our cold, dead lives into life abundant. This is a sure thing. So let us press on, as Hosea says, to know the Lord; for he comes to us as the spring showers, the spring rains that water the earth. "O, Lord, rain upon the fallow coldness of our hearts that life may come once again."