The Old Testament reading from Hosea chapter 2 is a powerful reading and some background is in order and shows how we are pursued by the Lord. In chapter 1, Hosea is told to marry Gomer who is described as a promiscuous woman. Hosea does so and they are blessed with children. At the beginning of Chapter 2, Hosea is determined to divorce his wife because of her infidelity. Yet in this reading he has a change of heart.
Hosea Pursues His Bride
This change of heart is significant as he sees passed the transgressions of Gomer and vows to love her. Hosea sees this as imagery of God and the people of Israel. Throughout salvation history the Lord pursued Israel, but time and again they sin. Yet the Lord has a made a covenant with his people that is seen as a type of marriage bond.
What does this have to do with us? In short it has everything to do with us. We have this annoying this called concupiscence. We have the inclination to sin. However, like Gomer, every time we sin we are committing adultery. Sin is akin to spiritual adultery. We are looking past God to something else. That something else may be our egos, sex, or cash. It can be anything. Yet we are pursued by God at every turn.
This imagery of being pursued and that of a marriage bond is continued in the life of Christ. Christ is the bridegroom who came for his bride. The church is the bride of Christ and the church is made up of sinners like you and I. Through it all we are relentlessly pursued by the Bridegroom. He loves us and nourished us with his own body and blood in the holy Eucharist.
The question I have for all of you is two fold. First and foremost are we actively pursuing the Bridegroom? This pandemic has showed us that many have taken the Eucharist for granted. It is my hope that this Eucharistic fast has been a big wake up call. I know it was for me. May we evaluate ourselves to see if this was, or is, the case.
The answer just may surprise you. Secondly are we ready for the Bridegroom to come again? Jesus said he will come again and we will not know the time nor place. How can we be ready for such an event? Live each day like today is the day! Be in a state of grace. Regularly attend Mass if you are able, read scripture, pray, and frequent the sacraments.
“The reason for our existence is to quench the thirst of Jesus. When he asked for water, the soldier gave him vinegar to drink—but his thirst was for love, for souls, for you and me.” – St. Teresa of Calcutta