“I led them with cords of kindness, with the bands of love … I bent down to them and fed them” (11:4). God had rescued Israel from Egypt, fed them in the wilderness, and given them the Promised Land. But they forgot Him and, along with Judah, turned to pagan nations for protection, copying their idols and “reaping the whirlwind” in terms of national disaster (8:7). But God still called them to repentance and healing (14:1).
Repentance, according to Hosea, is seeing our own wrong and trusting in God’s mercy. “Assyria shall not save us .. we will say no more, 'Our God,' to the work of our hands. In you the orphan finds mercy" (14:3).