Sometimes the Holy Spirit tweaks my soul ever so slightly just to let me know that whatever I am doing or thinking about is a problem. Without bossing me around, the Spirit gently says, “Hey, you need to address this. Soon. Before it eats you alive.”
In the recent past, I’d typically reply, “No thanks. Admitting this is a problem would mean I’d have to do something about it. And doing something about it would mean change. And change would mean pain. ” Actually, I wouldn’t even give the Spirit that much of an explanation. I’d stop at “No thanks,” and focus all my mental energy on ignoring the Spirit’s prod.
When I tell my 2 year old something she doesn’t want to hear, she stares at me with beautiful, round brown eyes. She blinks very slowly and very hard. And when she opens her eyes, if I am still looking at her, she snaps them shut, hoping me and my unwanted instructions will be gone when she reopens her eyes 10 seconds later…
I do that to the Holy Spirit.
I close my eyes, stick my fingers in my ears, and sing at the top of my lungs, “I can’t hear you, God! LaaaaLaaaaLaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!”
Hosea calls these parts of our lives we’d prefer to leave untouched – these comfortable ways in which we sin – our “unplowed ground”.
In chapter 10, Hosea is telling a hard-hearted Israel, “…break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord…” (Hosea 10:12).
Break it up. As in address it. Turn it over in your minds. Allow some fresh air and some light – allow THE Light – to infiltrate and expose all that’s been growing in the dark, hard soil of our souls. It’s time. We’ve neglected this ground for too long as it is.
“But it might hurt, Lord!”
“It will hurt far worse for you to continue to ignore that which needs so much attention,” He says.
“But I like it the way it is, Lord!”
“I have plans for this land – for you – that are indescribably better than you can envision right now, ” God says.
“But, Lord, I’m scared.”
“I know. I am with you,” He says.
Break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the Lord.
What a great illustration of “unplowed ground”! Thanks.