Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Been through some rough times? God has hope, restoration, and new mercies for you.

Have ya been through some hard times and now are feeling weary in well doing? Have you be ripped off because of your own bad decision or those of others? Have some people smeared your name and in some way ousted you? Have you lost a job? Do you feel mad at people or at God? Have you been suffering with some disease that the doctors can't seem to defeat with medicine and all their training? What kind of fiery trials or persecution or disenfranchisement have you experienced?
You are not alone. God has not forgotten you—He is not mad at you, but is right there with you in spite of the suffering. We live in a fallen world due to Adam and Eve's bad choices and now we suffer at times—it's not God's fault at all. Jesus intercedes for us.
And what did Jeremiah do when he looked upon the miserable conditions of God's people, after life had basically fallen completely apart for them as a people? Did he just turn away and ignore all the facts, not wanting to be bothered by them along with all the negative emotions? Nawww. He hurt, and he sill got involved with others who were hurting.
Jeremiah lamented the uber-sad conditions of his people, the Jews. These Hebrews were carted off far away if you will, to be captive in Babylon a long, long time. Why? It was because they had forsaken the Lord and via their own personal choices, they allowed their hearts to be turned away to worship dumb idols instead of the only wise God. What a waste!
But even though Jeremiah's eyes failed him, because of his tears and sorrow.. and even though his inner human spirit was greatly troubled to the max and his heart was like.. poured out on to the earth, Jeremiah still chose to hope in the Lord (See Lam. 2:11; 3:23-24). And there is hope for you in Christ Jesus your loving Lord!
I like how The New Living Translation speaks of hope as it lays out for us Jeremiah's very honest words…
"The thought of my suffering and homelessness is bitter beyond words. I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss. Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The unfailing love of the Lord never ends! By His mercies we have been kept from complete destruction. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each day. I say to myself, The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in Him! The Lord is wonderfully good to those who wait for Him and seek Him. So it is good to wait quietly for salvation from the Lord. And it is good for the young to submit to the yoke of His discipline. Let them sit alone in silence beneath the Lord's demands. Let them lie face down in the dust; then at last there is hope for them" (Lam. 3:19–27, nlt).
Makes me want to humble myself and submit. Makes me want to wait and listen, until God restores and heals all the hurts. What does that passage do for you?
Believer, have you had the bottom totally drop out from under your life and leave you with ashes? Yeah, according to Jeremiah, that's what makes us feel like we've got a mouth full of ashes to eat! Jeremiah says God's people can humbly turn to Him again and find a renewed inner strength and hope. Please do encourage yourself and remind yourself if no one else will ...that God's great merciful love is created anew for you every single morning!
Seek Jesus first in the morning before everything else crowds out your time alone with Him. He can still meet all your needs! Are you not sure if you even have hope against a very long lonely eternity? You can be sure that you are in Christ today!
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