I’ve been listening through the book of Jeremiah in the mornings as I get ready for work. Some mornings, I feel burdened. So much in America (and social media) is political upheaval. Starting off the morning listening to the weeping prophet recount the grotesque sins of God’s people (child sacrifice), and the promised violent destruction of Judah and Israel by the Babylonians seems like a counter-intuitive way to set the tone for the day.
Or is it?
Sin and punishment is a weighty, heavy topic … and one the world does not want to hear. If Jeremiah’s prophecies didn’t produce sorrow in my heart, maybe I’m not truly listening.
But there is also encouragement. Jeremiah’s persistent obedience, even in persecution, even in the unraveling of his city during the Babylonian siege, stirs a fearless hope. He faced what many of us fear today, in the counsel and fellowship of his God. Such a closeness is not now only reserved for prophets, but all of God’s children.
Over all the events of Jeremiah, there is God. God, who gives Jeremiah his mission and delivers him time and again. God, who does not withhold justice or redemption. God, who is so wonderfully Sovereign, that history is the actions and will of men – even men as powerful as Nebuchadnezzar – working out the plan of God.
And in the midst of it all, God shows His heart- his holy, perfect, compassionate heart. That is the true heart hope we need.
So take time to sit with the weeping prophet and learn more of the Almighty, Omnipresent, All-wise God who sustained him.