Thought for the week by Pastor Diana Rutherford

by Struthers Cumbernauld

'I led Israel along with my ropes of kindness and love. I lifted the yoke from his neck, and I myself stooped to feed him.' Hosea 11:4

I have recently been meditating on the kindness of God. There are lots of verses that describe His kindness in different situations but I particularly love this verse; the drawing power of God's kindness.

We all love when someone is kind to us. We love the little kindnesses that tell us someone is thinking about us and loves us. Who doesn't?

Our Lord shows His kindness to us. He remembers that we are but human beings who fail Him continually and yet He leads us with ropes of kindness and love. Ropes that don't hurt us but are just enough to guide us, stop us wandering off the chosen path and more importantly keep us close to Him. We read in Psalm 23:4

'Your rod and your staff protect and comfort me.'

These ropes are like that. They comfort us because they reassure us of His presence.

And yet, these verses take us one step further. We come to a place where we no longer need the ropes of His kindness and love. We enter a new relationship with Christ where He stoops to gently lift the ropes from round our neck and instead He lovingly feeds us from His own hand.

We are no longer servants who need the rope of His kindness but we have become His trusted companions.

John 15:15: I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me.

We read Christ stooped: He stooped when He became flesh and lived amongst us; He stooped when He washed the feet of His own and even more so when He died on the Cross; He stooped to bring us the bread from heaven to feed us tenderly from His own hand.

Let us be obedient children and respond to His great kindness today by not rebelling or closing down to His love but rather be as children who have come to trust the gentle hand that feeds us.