24 April 2020


In our trying experiences with this horrible coronavirus lately, many of us have been doing a lot of praying!  We’ve been interceding for the sick, our beloved friends in healthcare and our first-responders who are serving on the front lines and government officials as they lead.  In the height of this pandemic, we may wonder... “When will things end?  What will it look like in the future?  When will my happiness return?” 

In my journey with Jeremiah this week, I noticed his struggle, interceding on behalf of his sick nation – not with physical illness but the spiritual decay of sin.  The people of Israel and Judah continued to willfully dishonor God in their thoughts and deeds.  And, they did not appreciate Jeremiah’s constant pleading for them to turn from wickedness and embrace the Lord! 

In chapter 15, Jeremiah was on their hit list, and he called out to God for protection.  The Lord answered Jeremiah in vs. 11 – “All will be well with you, Jeremiah.”  (NLT)  He would deliver His prophet because the people were headed for exile.  In those simple words, Jeremiah understood something, and as I read the words he prayed, I came away renewed in two ways.   

First, in the middle of asking for deliverance, vs. 16, he said: “Your words are what sustain me.  They bring me great joy and are my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God Almighty.”   I love how Jeremiah hung on the Word of God, realizing how much God’s Word nurtured his soul!  The voice of God kept Him going – not just being confident God would do what He said, but in moment-by-moment joy!  Was his situation rough?  You bet!  I think today is difficult... but I can’t imagine the lonely trials he endured in a nation filled with sinful apostasy where everyone seemingly was out to get him!

Are we delighting in the Word today? ... In His voice that speaks through the pages of Scripture, illuminated by the Spirit?  Let that sustain you as you live for Him!

Second, God also called Jeremiah to be the bearer of His name – to represent Him to the people.  In fact, in the Hebrew, the name Almighty means God of Hosts, of Heaven’s Armies!  God called him to reflect the power of God in the middle of his circumstances!

But Jeremiah complained.  He kept asking why, vs. 18.  “Why is my wound so incurable? Your help seems as uncertain as a seasonal brook...like a spring that has gone dry.”  “Why, Lord, why?!”  I know I am tempted to do the same.  God then replied, vs. 19 – “If you return to me, I will restore you so you can continue to serve me. If you speak words that are worthy, you will be my spokesman.  You are to influence them; do not let them influence you!”   Oh, how often I continue complaining when all I need to do is trust in God’s word to me!  He will provide for my needs!  “I will never leave you, nor forsake you!”  (Hebrews 13:5) 

Family, God says those of us called to Christ are bearers of His image – “conformed to the likeness of his Son,” Romans 8:29 – to speak worthy words...so that others are influenced for Christ!  In my time with the Lord, my prayer has been this: “Lord, how can I be the bearer of Light this week, so others see You in me?”  

Will that be your prayer, too?  Will you be an influencer for Christ, not complaining about life, as we can do when faced with difficulty?  Allow His Word to sustain you so you delight in bearing His name!

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Mike. Just got the proverbial kick in the buttocks. Love Jeremiah.