Song of the Day: Andrew Peterson

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In light of the upcoming release of Resurrection Letters, Vol. II, I’m going to post some of the new songs.The label asked me to write a few paragraphs about each song for promotional stuff, so I’ll include that too.  Hope you enjoy!

HOSEA
This song is not about some dude named José.  The Old Testament story of Hosea paints a powerful picture of the stubborn, pursuing, renewing love of God.  Hosea is told by God to marry a runaround, no-good, heartless woman.  Hosea obeys, and I can’t help thinking that he must not have enjoyed it much.  He was probably humiliated, scorned by his friends, not to mention heartbroken by his new wife, Gomer.  Even Noah, mocked for building a giant boat in the middle of a desert, at least kept a little dignity, could feel like a man with his wife and sons near at hand.

But there was Hosea, alone in bed while his wife caroused, and everyone knew it.  All because God wanted to make a point.  After Gomer ran off with another man, God sent Hosea to buy her back and bring her home.  Then God said about Israel, about us, dead in our sin: “…I am now going to allure her; I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her.  There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope.  There she will sing as in the days of her youth…”  The word Achor means “trouble”.  From the ashes of the Valley of Trouble came new life, green and lush.  Forgiveness. Rest. Resurrection.

 

Hosea 1:2,3
Hosea 2:13-16
Hosea 3:1,2

Every time I lay in the bed beside you
Hosea, Hosea
I hear the sound of the streets of the city
My belly growls like a hungry wolf
And I let it prowl till my belly’s full
Hosea, my heart is a stone

Please believe me when I say I’m sorry
Hosea, Hosea
You loveable, gullible man
I tell you that my love is true
Till it fades away like a morning dew
Hosea, leave me alone

Here I am in the Valley of Trouble
Just look at the bed that I’ve made
Badlands as far as I can see
There’s no one here but me, Hosea

I stumbled and fell in the road on the way home
Hosea, Hosea
I lay in the brick street like a stray dog
You came to me like a silver moon
With the saddest smile I ever knew
Hosea carried me home again, home again

You called me out to the Valley of Trouble
Just to look at the mess that I’ve made
A barren place where nothing can grow
One look and my stone heart crumbled
It was a valley as green as jade
I swear it was the color of hope
You turned a stone into a rose, Hosea

I sang and I danced like I did as a young girl
Hosea, Hosea
I am a slave and a harlot no more
You washed me clean like a summer rain
And you set me free with that ball and chain
Hosea, I threw away the key
I’ll never leave

As a singer-songwriter and recording artist, Andrew has released more than ten records over the past fifteen years. His music has earned him a reputation for writing songs that connect with his listeners in ways equally powerful, poetic, and intimate. He has also followed his gifts into the realm of publishing. His books include the four volumes of the award-winning Wingfeather Saga.


19 Comments

  1. Paul H

    I also have a soft spot for this story, because it breaks my heart to realize I been a Gomer to Jesus, but am so glad He was/is Hosea to me.

  2. Ron Davis

    This is one that really stood out to me on my first listen through the new CD.

    I love how the story progresses through the song. “my heart is a stone” to “leave me a lone” to “there’s no one here but me” (I’m alone) to “carried me home”.

    Beautiful.

  3. Kevin

    What a picture of what we do to God when we pridefully sin.

    Then what God does for us after He helps us realize how foolish we have been and recognize that He is the King and Lord of our every deed.

    We then come to the realization that true freedom only comes when Christ is in complete control of our lives and we never want to leave.

    Lord help me to keep you at the center of my life so that I may not want to stray.

  4. April

    I love this song!

    It always reminds me of Redeeming Love, Francine Rivers’ retelling of the story of Hosea, which is one of the most profoundly impacting works of fiction I have ever read. The book and the song both remind me of the crazy, amazing love of our God.

    Thanks also for posting the extra insight into the specific Bible verses that are referenced in the song!

  5. Nate

    That last stanza… wow… it really captures the heart of the text. What a wretched, obscene yet beautiful text! I cannot think of a text that has better informed me on marriage or salvation. If salvation does not leap from that, from where could it come?

  6. Paula Shaw

    I can’t wait until the CD comes out. I give AP’s music to everyone I know because I think he has the profound gift of articulating those things we “ungifted” folks can only feel in our hearts, but can’t speak with our lips. Make sense? So, I am very impatiently awaiting the arrival of Resurrection Letters. I already promised my best friend in Houston a copy, and I’ll have 2 more to give away here in Tulsa since I’ll have plenty, because I took advantage of the pre-order deal and got 4 for the price of 2! =) Andrew, Ben, and everyone who sings or plays on these CDs, I thank God for you and the relentless ways in which each of you pursue excellence for our God!

  7. Peter B

    I already have my two copies on order. I’ve listened to the Centricity flash player about a hundred times now — and this song stops me dead in my tracks every time I hear it. Once I realized that “Hosea” means “salvation” — which only makes sense when you think about how much it sounds like “Hosanna” (save now!) and Joshua/Jesus (the Lord saves) — the whole thing just clicked into place.

    Also, Paula:

    I give AP’s music to everyone I know because I think he has the profound gift of articulating those things we “ungifted” folks can only feel in our hearts, but can’t speak with our lips. Make sense?

    Completely.

    AP, thank you for being faithful to the Giver with your gifts.

  8. easton crow

    AP, this song has been heartbreaking and hope-giving both for me. I have been living this story over the last year, and it sucks. I alternately hate her and hate God and hate the whole mess of the world. Thanks for redirecting and reminding me that God can have a larger purpose in what He does and that there is hope in Him.

  9. Julie

    April,
    I was also thinking of Reedming Love when I heard this song. Awesome book!
    And AP, Awesomw song! I love love love it!

  10. Linda Walters

    Awesome song. I found out about this website through Andy Osenga’s web site. I love this web site! I will be a frequent visitor for sure. Thanks for sharing the song.

  11. Melissa

    I’m sure you’ve heard this before, but your key changes are amazing. I love the key change before the last stanza, and I couldn’t help but think of Shiloh (I cried the first time I heard that key change into the last verse on that song). Thank you for using your music to bless people and bring them closer to God.

  12. Wayne Hinson

    Thanks for the song. It was delightful to listen to. The musicianship was artful and refreshing. The musicians provided a great backdrop for the beautiful words of the song. Neat that I just finished reading Hosea over the weekend. I am glad that our God loves us so…CDH

  13. Randall Goodgame

    Glad to see a couple of comments about AP’s musical panache. He gets so much well deserved praise for his lyrics that it’s easy to overlook his brilliant musicianship and finely tuned musical sensibilties.

    This song has it all for me as well. I love the way it moves and breathes through the heartbreaking lyric with the built-in rhythm of lines like… “just look at the bed that I’ve made.” He does such a great job using pictures to draw us through Gomer’s storyline – and while I’m gushing, it was a masterstroke of inspiration to write a song from her perspective. And man, the last verse gets me every time.

  14. Tina

    Wow. Thank you! Today is the first I’ve ever heard this song. It’s so very special. 11 years ago, God used Hosea 2:14-23 to ravish my heart and to draw me to Himself.

    I would only change ONE thing about this beautiful song: “You loveable, gullible man”… as a picture God’s relationship with us… as a picture of our Christ, redeeming His bride, I can’t sing gullible… it was obedience… beautiful obedience! I can’t help singing, “You faithful, obedient man”

    And you are so right… “And you set me free with that ball and chain
    Hosea, I threw away the key
    I’ll never leave”

    Thanking God for your ministry…

  15. Tina

    You know… after listening a few more times… it makes sense… GOMER probably DID think he was gullible! Wow! I want to search my heart… could my presumption be an assumption that God is gullible… ow… wonderfully thought-provoking!

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