A Sad Story of Boundless Love
The following story was inspired by the book of Hosea and a quote from Ralph Earle. *
Flirtatious and carefree, I would describe her. Even as a child, you could see that immediately if you ran into her with her mom at the supermarket. Before she could talk, she would grin at a stranger in the checkout line and almost always get a response. As a youth she was a party girl. She wore the latest and (for our little town) most daring fashions.
Older folks wondered what kind of a wife and mother she would make. She seemed like a perpetual teenager. Will she grow up and settle down?
But I loved her. It felt like I had always loved her. I waited. Years went by and she hadn’t married. I felt it was time to ask her.
“Gomer, will you marry me?”
“Of course, I will, Hosea.” I reached out my hand to her and she fell into my arms. My heart raced. As I spoke the words I had thought for so long, “I love you, my dear Gomer.”
“I love you, too, Hosea. I can’t wait to be your wife.”
It was a budget wedding, but Gomer was beautiful and vivacious. We toasted and danced until dawn. Then we rode off to our new life together.
Children came soon after. Boy. Girl. Boy. If Gomer was restless and unhappy, she hid it from me. I didn’t know.
One day, I picked up the kids from school and headed home. The house was empty. I looked for my wife, but she was nowhere. Then I spotted a note on our bed.
“Going out for the evening with Lou. There’s food in the fridge.”
I sat on the bed in shock. Lou? She went out with Lou!
Lou was not my friend although I knew him since childhood. We had a long history, but not a good one. In high school, Lou always had a money-making scam going. He was doing Ponzi schemes before anyone else had heard of such.
Going out with Lou was the worst news I could ever get. Lou ran an “escort service,” and my wife had gone out with him. That could only mean one thing. Gomer had broken our marriage vow.
“Where’s Mommy?” asked my daughter as we sat eating our supper.
“I don’t know,” I said. That was partly untrue.
“When is she coming back?” asked my youngest son. His older brother sat quietly trying to figure out if it would be OK to ask a question like that.
“I don’t know,” I said. That was partly true.
I put the kids to bed and told them I was going out to find their Mommy. My sister who lives next door would stay with them until I got home.
It was a long night. I was sure Lou had convinced Gomer to join his so-called business. I drove from one sleazy watering hole to another asking for her. No one knew anything. Lou would make sure no one squealed. Finally, in the wee hours I spotted her coming out of a motel room. She was drunk. Someone was waiting for her in a car. I watched as she got in the car. I approached the driver. It was Lou. He was paying her in $100 dollar bills. Must have been a busy night.
“Lou, I want my wife back!” I screamed.
“This isn’t your wife, buddy. This is Gigi. She’s mine now. Aren’t you, honey?”
Gomer lowered her head but said nothing.
Lou continued, “Look, I am a reasonable man. Let’s make a deal. She is priceless. We both know that. Ha ha! But you can have her for one million dollars payable in unmarked bills.”
I expected this.
As Gomer and I drove home, she laid her head on my shoulder. She still smelled of Old Spice, English Leather, and Musk.
“Why did you do this?” she asked.
“Because I love you,” I said through tears. “Nothing can change that. Not even what you have done.”
“Did you really pay one million dollars for me?”
“No, my dear Gomer, no. I paid much more.”
“How much more?” she insisted.
“I paid everything I had for you.”
© 2017 John A Carroll
*See Leland Ryken, Philip Ryken, and James Wilhoit, Ryken’s Bible Handbook (Wheaton, IL Tyndale House Publishers, 2005) p.346 for full quote from Ralph Earle.
If you are following the Concealed and Revealed schedule, this week in the Old Testament we will finish Hosea, read Joel and Amos and begin Revelation in the New Testament. See the schedule below.
Week 50 in the Word—December 10-16, 2021
December 10/Day 344 From a Cloud to a Kingdom (Hosea 5-8; Revelation 1)
December 11/Day 345 A Time to Love; a Time to Hate (Hosea 9-11; Revelation 2)
December 12/Day 346 The Danger of Prosperity (Hosea 12-14; Revelation 3)
December 13/Day 347 The Day of the Lord (Joel 1-3; Revelation 4)
December 14/Day 348 Who is Worthy? (Amos 1-3; Revelation 5)
December 15/Day 349 The Day of Wrath (Amos 4-6; Revelation 6)
December 16/Day 350 Restoration after Tribulation (Amos 7-9; Revelation 7)
This schedule and devotionals are taken from my book Concealed and Revealed: a year in the old and new testaments. Available here.
Have a great week in the Word, and remember Jesus gave Himself for you!