One of the passages from the Hebrew Scriptures that touches me deeply each time I read it comes from the Prophet Hosea Chapter 2:
“Thus says the Lord: I will allure her, I will lead her into the desert and speak to her heart. She shall respond there as in the days of her youth…”
Often I find myself recalling the enthusiasm of my youth to go wherever I was sent to go. I wanted a mission that would demand everything of me and from within me. And so in the days of my youth I went to Republic of South Africa because so few others wanted to go to an Apartheid system of oppression. In my idealism I felt that if the people could only understand how deeply they were loved, they would treat each other with respect and grace.
As I am certain you are aware, injustice does not fade easily. I thought back then that if I became a non violent agent, things could and would change. When I left South Africa after eight years, the apartheid system was still in place, but my heart had changed.
This passage speaks of the heartbeat of God. It is God whose love transforms people and their lives when they are able to listen to that beat. Now some 30 years later, my deepest desire is to hold the space for people to discover a Love that transcends all love. I know it isn’t about me, but rather me stepping out of the picture so that others can listen and respond. God truly does lure each of us so that God can speak to our hearts.
In this summer’s desert heat, may you too come to hear the heartbeat of God as it proclaims a love that never ends.