God never leaves us. It’s we who leave Him. The Israelites learned this time and time again, and hopefully, we learn this ourselves as well. Well, hopefully, we never stray away from God, but we all do in our own ways. The good news is that God always takes us back, especially when our hearts are in it for realz. I know this chapter says a lot about the rulers and the time that passed for the Israelites, but I honed in on one short piece of a verse, and I’m clinging to it today: “And he was grieved by their misery (v. 16).” Isn’t that beautiful? The Israelites – once again – knew they’d messed up and came graveling back to God. They were so desperate for His guidance they said, “Punish us! Do whatever! Just take us back, PLEEEEEASE!!!” If you have kids maybe you can empathize with the Israelites and God. I get fire mad at my kids sometimes, and sometimes they earn it and know it, so they go to begging, and I go to forgiving … because I am grieved by their misery. I can’t stand it! I can’t imagine how much God’s heart was breaking after 18 years of abandonment, but from my small experiences I can at least relate in my own tiny way.
Writing prompt: heartbroken
Have you ever had your heart broken and then had to forgive someone for it? Write about the experience and how you feel about that person today.