Back to me and my pile of poo as told in “I’m Sorry.” I told my wife Aleta that I was sorry, but my words weren’t real repentance. In truth, my “sorry” was just me dealing in misinformation; saying what I knew my wife wanted me to say so that I could A) blow off the issue as no big deal (because if it’s no big deal to me it shouldn’t be to her right?), and B) get her to leave me alone. No matter how much more work it would have taken, or difficulty in the conversation that followed, real repentance would have involved much more honest words out of my mouth; words like “You’re right I blew it,” and “I really didn’t know this bugged you that much.”
In our Hosea 6: 1-4, the people of Israel were saying whatever they had to say to talk their way out of trouble. Don’t we do the same at times when we say, “God, I promise I’ll stop after this one last time!” or “God, you’re right, you’re right – I really need to do something about this!” while we do nothing about it? What are we saying to God right now that is our way of saying whatever we think we have to say to blow off the issue, and get God to leave us alone?
When God places the mirror of His love right in front of our face, and we recognize a need for change in our lives that God’s seen all along, He (like any lover) doesn’t want to hear infuriating misinformation out of our mouths. God wants to hear the intimacy-building, healing response of honesty.