All Sons & Daughters | All The Poor And Powerless
Solomon ends this whole thing by saying this, “If you do these things, maybe you’ll walk out of the desert, but in the end, maybe you won’t. In the end, God is the one you must fear.” Now look at me because
I want to say something that’s wildly unpopular, but in the end it’s beautiful. Sometimes, God ordains the desert. Sometimes, it’s not because of sin and it’s not because of disobedience, but because God put you out there. In New Mexico, for some reason, I began reading through the book of Hosea, a real family friendly book in the middle of the Old Testament. Hosea was a normal man who God came to, and He said, “Listen, I want you to marry a hooker.” And Hosea said, “Did you say hooker? Or did you say ‘Read a booker?’ Alright, I lost it there.” And He goes, “No, I said prostitute. I want you to marry a woman of ill repute. And here’s the thing, Hosea. She’s going to be horrible to you. She’s going to cheat on you over and over and over again. She’s going to betray you. And each time she does, I’m going to increase your love for her so that you can’t wash your hands of it and walk away. And you’re going grieve and you’re going to hurt and you’re going to sob and you’re going to wail, but I’m not going to let you walk away from her.”
And you know, the first thing that struck me is that God told Hosea up front. But here’s the thing He says to Hosea in chapter 2, and for me, this left an unbelievable mark on me that I haven’t been able to get away from.
Here’s what He says to Hosea. He says, “Here’s what I’m going to do with Gomer, your cheating wife. I’m going to take her out to the desert, I’m going to allure her, and out in the desert, she’ll finally get tired of herself. And when she finally gets tired of herself…” You want to know the character of God? Listen to what’s next. “…there I will speak tenderly to her.” So, He doesn’t take her out into the desert and go, “Shame on you, woman of ill repute.” He doesn’t take her out into the desert to berate her for her sins or to pile on for her poor decisions, He says, “I’m going to take her out into the desert, and when she’s gasping for water, when she’s exhausted of herself, there I will speak tenderly to her and I will increase her vineyards.”
In the Old Testament, wine and joy are this parallel, they’re equal. Like, if you see wine mentioned, they’re talking about the increase in joy. In fact, even king David said, “You fill
me with greater joy than when grain and new wine abound.” Because wine is kind of this symbol of fruit and life and joy. And He says, “I’ve got to take her out into the desert. I’ve got to take her out there, because the only way to kill certain things is to deprive it of water. And so, I’m going to walk her out into the desert, and I’m going to starve this thing out. And when she’s almost dying, I’m going to speak tenderly to her, and I’m going to increase her joy.” And then, look at me, because the next line to me was so heartbreaking and encouraging.
He says, “And out there, out where it’s dry, she’ll finally learn to quit calling me master and start calling me husband.”
And so, for some of you, please hear me, because I’ve been there. Please hear me. Tonight, your in a dry time not because God’s angry with you, but because He desperately loves you. That’s why. Right now, for some of you, the reason you can’t find Him is because He desperately wants you to really find Him. Are you tracking with that idea? Like, for some of you, He feels far so that you might as Acts 17 says, you might, “grope for Him although He is not far from any of us.”
So, maybe you’ve been allured out there. Maybe it’s not sin, maybe it’s not disobedience, maybe God just said, “Okay, I’ve got to kill some stuff in you. Let’s go.”
“Well, what stuff do You want to kill?”
“Well, I could explain it to you now, but you wouldn’t actually believe that it’s actually in your heart, because it’s really, really deep down. I mean, I’ve got to take the plow to you. Let’s get out of here. Let’s go to the desert.”
“Well, I don’t like the desert.”
“Well, I know you don’t, but let’s get out there. Because out there, I can really do a work in you, a work that will make you quit coming to church and quit doing Christiany stuff. Because you think in the end, I can kill you or that I wish you harm. It’s out here, it’s out in the struggle, it’s out in the fight that you’re finally going to learn that I love you.”
So, sometimes the desert, it’s here for awhile, man. Because I think that’s the question when God goes, “Come on, let’s go to the desert.” “Well, how much water do I need to pack?” Maybe six weeks, maybe six months. Listen to me, maybe six years. This ain’t no Rubix Cube, man. This isn’t math. Some times with God, 2 + 2 doesn’t equal 4. “Come on.” He says, “Come on, let’s go. Out to the desert, come on. It’s dry, it hurts, but pay attention to your feet. Draw near and listen. I have not abandoned you. Pray for real to Me. Don’t the game with Me. I know you’re hiding in the closet. Let’s not play this game. Be honest. It’s where we have to begin. And when I whisper to you, follow Me because I’m trying to get you out of here.
"Ledges"- Noah Gundersen
Beautiful words and pretty voices. Enough said.
and i want to learn how to love,
and give it all back,
and be forgiven for all i’ve done.
this is my favorite noah gundersen song.
and because noah gundersen is my favorite songwriter ever.. that’s a pretty steep thing.
but. this song. so. fucking. good.
Stromae - Papaoutai
Last year the most popular video on French TV and the number one song in France and Belgium was “Papaoutai” by Belgian singer Stromae. The tune and rhythms are appealing and unusual; the video is compelling and, ultimately, moving. Though the title sounds like it could be a word in an African language, it is actually meant to be understood by French speakers as meaning “Papa, où t’es?” which translates as “Dad, where are you?” The song and the story of the video refer to the absence of Stromae’s father, who was killed in the Rwandan genocide of 1994. The plaintive cry of the singer who feels the absence of his father is also expressed in the child in the video who begs his mannequin-like father to come to life.