Monday, August 24, 2015

Jeremiah 29:11-13 NASB - "11 'For I know the plans that I have for you,' declares the LORD, 'plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. 12 'Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13 'You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart."

Calamity does come to us.  Moments of such crisis and loss that we have nothing left in us and wonder if we can keep ourselves sane.  Our stability is gone.  The sense of God's Spirit seems distant to us.  Times like this are very dark.  

Jeremiah wrote this at such a time.  War, famine, and plague filled the land.  Funerals were common and cries of mourning could be heard in every village in Israel.  It was not just the aged who were dying but the young.  Many times their deaths were brutal and painful.  So clearly calamity has come. 

But God's long term plan was not to leave them in calamity.  Calamity like a time of pregnancy had an aim to bring them to a better place.  In the crisis of such times they would be taught to pray and seek instead of living is self sufficancy, pride, and self righteousness.  

The welfare of thier souls would be gained through the hardships they now suffered.  This was not only true of Israel in the days of Jeremiah but is true for us today.  

When death, sickness, and failure come in a wave that will surely crush us our hope, the ultimate purpose of God in the mercy of Christ, is not to utterly destroy us but to utterly restore us.  

This does not mean that our pain does not hurt.  It is normal and necessary that we cry and express our grief, confusion, and struggle.  We can lament before the Lord.  

It may be good to read the book of Lamentations also written by Jeremiah to gain perspective on the role of crying out to God in the midst of calamity is to our walk with God.  

So there is a time to cry but not a time to give up hope that the kingdom of Messiah will make itself known to every nation.  Calamity does not endure.  God's plan to bless us in HIS kingdom will stand.  Amen


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