Saturday, October 4, 2014

The way of restoration. Lamentations 3:21-26

Jeremiah was a prophet of God during very difficult times.... As God's spokesman he was there to warn the people of the impending collapse of the City of Jerusalem..... and after the fall he remained in Jerusalem speaking on behalf of the Lord to those who had been exiled to Babylon.

He gave the people an explanation of how their sin had brought this disaster upon them.  He also  spoke of the eventual hope of the nation which would return to Jerusalem some 70 years in the future. This wasn't the greatest news for those still living in Babylon.   For those he offers the instructions recorded in Jeremiah 29:4-14 as well as here in Ecclesiastes 3:21-26.   His instructions tells them to live faithfully and seek the Lord with their entire heart.  Jeremiah 29:13 and Lamentations 3:25

This would be their hope to sustain them and it is our hope as well.

Jeremiah could offer this advice because he knew of the Lord's faithfulness and forgiveness that after the time of disciple had done its work the Lord would help them to find the road of blessing again.    This is the process of restoration and this process is often painful but it is a grace of the Lord which would bring the people to a deeper intimacy with the Him.

With this belief in his heart Jeremiah would say what we find recorded in Lamentations 3:21-23 ... Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:  Because of the Lord's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

Perhaps each of us can speak of the faithfulness of the Lord in our past and in our present.   Many of these times we wonder why we deserved his favor.  Yet one thing we find throughout Scriptures is that God is with us in a special way.. and there is a special blessing reserved for those who seek him with their entire heart, despite the troubles around them.

 Knowing this Jeremiah would write..  I say to myself, "The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him." The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him;  it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.  Lamentations 3:24-26

Today we have difficulty with this idea of waiting quietly for the Lord.  When marriage troubles come, when financial struggles are on the horizons, when our lives are broken we tend to turn everyway but to the Lord and these behaviors bring our ruin much faster than the trials at hand.   Instead of waiting to see God in the midst of our pain we turn to addictions, new relationships, and we run from the Lord.  In this case perhaps God's only course of action is to allow us to fall or to discipline us. But even if we are falling his hand is close to us and protecting us.  Remember God is always waiting for His prodigal son and daughter to return.

Today I pray that you will lift your burdens to the Lord.  I pray you will trust in his faithfulness even when you don't understand.  I pray that you will seek the Lord and turn from any evil ways which harm others and side tract God's restoration in your life.   Remember God's hand is very near the broken hearted.    

It is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.