3rdweek in Lent, Friday – 17th March 2023 – Hosea 14,2-10; Mark 12,28-34
Blessings of Greenness of Love
In this closing part of the book of Hosea, the prophet speaks about turning away from our sins and returning to the Lord. More than any other prophet, Hosea is very descriptive about God’s love for His people. He invites the people who are close to God’s heart to return to Him. He says the troubles they have been experiencing are due to their alienation from God. If they will only come back to Him, where they belong, they will bear rich fruit, produce a fragrant smell, and have abundant life. God is only too anxious to shower his love and gifts on them. God brings healing for them saying, “I shall cure them of disloyalty, I shall love them with all my heart” (Hos 14,4). And He promises abundant blessings expressed in lovely phrases taken from plant life, “I will be like the dew for Israel, they will blossom like the lily – they will strike root like the forests of Lebanon and put forth shoots splendid as the olive tree – fragrant as a cedar of Lebanon – produce grain and blossom like the vine – become as famous as the wine of Lebanon” (Hos 14, 5-7). God compares himself to the greenness of a cypress tree, a source of life and fruitfulness for his people. Thus, God continues to manifest His total and unconditional love for his chosen people.