Summary: White picket fences. 3 cars. 2 1/2 kids. A dog. Perfection. That is what we all think our relationship will be. We place ourselves in every romance movie we have ever seen. In our minds we expect no problems, no pain , no tears, no fears and no reality!
Pt. 3 - Can You Hear Me Now?
Franklin Roosevelt knew it was true in politics. Legend has it that as each dignitary would file by to shake his hand he decided to prove it. As he grasped each hand and the guest would lean in to exchange pleasantries Roosevelt would say “I murdered my grandmother this morning.” Guest after guest went by and no one said a word in response. No reaction. Until finally late in the line a diplomat upon hearing Roosevelt’s confession responded by saying “Mr. President I am sure she had it coming!” Rosevelt knew that in politics no one really listens.
Unfortunately that also seems to be true in relationships.
65% of couples interviewed say that their biggest issue is communication. 70% of husbands say their biggest issue is that wife nags them. That isn’t about nagging as much as it is about communication.
Now let’s think about the idea of communication against the backdrop of the story we have been examining over the last few weeks. It is the story of a man of the cloth and a woman of the night. A preacher and a prostitute. It is the story of Hosea and G. The account of Hosea and G is contained in the book that bears the preacher’s name. Hosea is 14 chapters long and most of the information that is easily seen or deciphered regarding the relationship between Hosea and Gomer is found in the first 3 chapters. As most of you probably know God instructs Hosea to go and find a prostitute to marry and have a family with. This marriage becomes an illustrated sermon by which God addresses Israel’s tendency to love God and then leave God and then repeat. So, after chapter 3 you find the declarations about Israel made by God through Hosea. In chapter one Hosea selects Gomer and they have 3 children. By chapter 3 she has gone back to prostitution and Hosea goes and buys her back a final time.
Hosea 1:2-9 (TLB)
Here is the first message: The Lord said to Hosea, “Go and marry a girl who is a prostitute, so that some of her children will be born to you from other men. This will illustrate the way my people have been untrue to me, committing open adultery against me by worshiping other gods.”
Then in Hosea 3 we see the final rescue.
Hosea 3:1-3 (Message)
Then God ordered me, “Start all over: Love your wife again, your wife who’s in bed with her latest boyfriend, your cheating wife. Love her the way I, God, love the Israelite people, even as they flirt and party with every god that takes their fancy.” I did it. I paid good money to get her back. It cost me the price of a slave. Then I told her, “From now on you’re living with me. No more whoring, no more sleeping around. You’re living with me and I’m living with you.”
It is an incredible account of mercy and redemption. However, as I began rereading the story of this complicated couple I noticed something I had never noticed before. I want to let you in on the revelation today. I would like to take the time to read to you every word that Gomer says in this account. OK, are you ready? Here we go. . .
That is right there is no recorded word spoken by Gomer. Not a single solitary word. God talks. Hosea has 14 chapters of stuff to say. Gomer is recorded saying nothing. I am not trying to make Scripture say something it doesn’t but the lack of a speaking part in the story for Gomer speaks volumes. Especially if I am right and (SLIDE 10) communication is the single most critical component of a healthy relationship.
This account, with its lack of meaningful communication between the main players, teaches us about communication in relationships. Here are the truths I want to share with you today . . .
1. If you can’t talk, then you can’t walk.
This story reveals that without communication a relationship can not be healthy. The truth is your relationship will only go as far as your communication will take you. As Darius Daniels says, “Communication is transportation that moves and carries your relationship to a destination.” Minus communication you will travel but it will not be to the same destination or dream. The lack of communication in Hosea and G’s relationship carried them to completely different paths. Society has said “talk is cheap!” However, talk is the determining factor as to whether our paths will converge.
2. Intimacy hinges on communication.
Our society has tried to convince us that intimacy is achieved by sex. Wrong!! Notice that by society standards Hosea and Gomer experienced intimacy. However, their story doesn't bear that out. Intimacy is only accomplished by communication. You have heard it said that whoever has your ear has your future. The truth is that whoever has your ear also has your heart. Too many of us never experience intimacy because we have not learned how to communicate ideas and dreams.Talk matters! If we don’t learn to communicate everything stays on the surface level.