Redeeming Love

by Chris Abbey

Did you see it? The movie, “Redeeming Love”? I read the book twice, (once as part of Wise Women of Esther); and my sweet husband recently took me to see the movie for a belated Valentine’s Day treat.

If you’re not familiar with the story, it’s a parable on the book of Hosea, which we all know is a parable of God’s relationship with Israel. No matter how bad Gomer and Israel were, Hosea and God fervently pursued them and did everything in their power to rescue them.

In the movie, the main character, Angel, was sold as a child into prostitution, held captive her entire life, with no hope. No hope of ever getting away, no hope of love, no hope at all. She was abused, both physically and mentally, and had zero love in her heart. She knew nothing but evil, pain, and heartache. 

Then along came her redeemer, Michael Hosea. He lived an idyllic, simple life with a safe, humble, loving home and farm. He was a Godly man, who asked God to send him a helpmate. God led him to Angel. Michael was nothing like the other men who had been sent to Angel and she wasn’t quite sure how to handle him: she didn’t understand his intentions. He wanted nothing from her but to take her away and give her a good life. A good life that she didn’t think she deserved. Angel felt unworthy of Michael’s love. She felt she was too dirty, too bad of a person to be loved by anyone, and too far gone. She had no hope.

The point of the movie, story, and scripture is that no one is EVER too dirty, too bad of a person, or too far gone to be redeemed by our Savior. He knows our story, every tiny detail. He knows our heart and He knows our future. Whether you had a rough life, either by your choice or by someone else’s, God will rescue you and redeem you. Forever. As long as you have breath, you have hope. God is mightier than any transgression we have ever made. Don’t ever think you are too far gone to be saved. That’s when He gives His very best!

And our hope is in Jesus Christ, our Redeemer, our Rescuer, our Protector. Isaiah 44:22 NIV says, “I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you.” It’s interesting that the metaphor Isaiah uses here is “swept”. When you sweep, you clean out the dirt, wipe it completely away so that all that is left is an open, bare surface, renewed.

I remember attending a revival in Atlanta once and there was this lady in the very front row. Each time the preachers said a good word, she would jump out of her chair, raise her hands, waive a red handkerchief, and shout ‘Hallelujah!” After a while I asked the person next to me who she was. I thought she was crazy! They said she was once a prostitute who heard someone’s testimony. That simple event purged her of her old ways and she became a new child of God. The gratefulness in her face and actions was so amazing. I think that the farther down you think you are, the more you appreciate your reward when you finally receive His love. I will never forget that woman. She is the perfect example of God’s redeeming love. As we all are.

While in the S.H.A.P.E. Sunday School class, Laura Enslen read something that I considered. The author of the book she was reading told us of our need to stretch for infinite joy. I like that phrase. She read, “Don’t settle for making mud pies in your backyard when God has prepared a party for you by the sea.” He has so much in store for us. We all have a story to tell, a story of how God saved us, and a future with Him so amazing that we can’t even imagine. 

 “And giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of His holy people in the kingdom of light. For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. (Colossians 1:12-14 NIV)

Lord, thank you for the many blessings You have given to us. Thank You for helping me through my life’s journey to bring me right here, right now, for redeeming my soul. Please show each of us where You want us to serve You, as we praise You for pouring out hope and joy all over us. Allow us that infinite joy as we witness and minister to those around us. Amen.


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