Tuesday, February 10, 2009

From Mourning To Dancing

I loved this morning's devotion. Not necessarily the devotional story itself, but the verse that went with it. It's one of my very favorite passages in Scripture, and also one of my favorite hymns. That's right, I said hymns. I love the lyrics of the old hymns...and the ones on today's hymns as well. Anyway, this is the Scripture I read and what God laid on my heart after:

Lamentations 3:22~24 The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. 23 Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning. 24 I say to myself, "The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in Him!"

Jeremiah wrote this passage during a very difficult time. Poor man~he saw a lot of hardship in his days back then. His beloved city Jerusalem lay in ruins. Once "the queen of all the earth" (verse 1), she now lay in ruin. Infants and children lay dying in the streets, crying out from hunger pains, yet there was no one there to comfort them or bring food. Their neighbors became their enemies as they faced this trying time. In ch.3 verse 30 the Word says to turn the other cheek to those who strike you and to accept the insults of your enemies. The world as they knew it was a thing of the past. It was literally caving in around them.

Yet in the midst of this pain and sorrow, Jeremiah states what I wrote above in verses 22~24. He knew that even though his world was a wreck, that God was still a loving, forgiving God that gave His new mercies each morning. Even though he could have turned his back on the God he loved and served, he didn't. He chose to put all his hope in Him, the same God who is good to those who depend on Him (verse 25), and to those who search for Him.

God won't always bring us out of our pit when we want Him to. But He will bring us out of it. There is always a lesson to be learned from our trials.In the book of James that's why the Word says to rejoice in these times. I know I've learned plenty along the way, and when I look back, I am thankful for what I have been through because it has taught me to trust in Him. It's hard to think like this when we're going through something hard, though, that's why it's important to stay in God's word!!! If all else fails, and you don't know where to begin, go to the book of Psalm. In this same devotion I'm doing, there is one day that they mention praying the Psalm's Prescription...it's the last 7 chapters of Psalm. When you don't know what to say, pray those aloud. I did it one morning, and let me tell you, it's powerful. The hairs on me were standing straight up by the time I got to the end.

If Jeremiah can put his hope in the Lord, don't you think we can in whatever we're facing? Read His word, and just sit quietly and see what He speaks to you...maybe not audibly, but see if you feel something in your heart. Often He speaks to me that way...it's just a thought I get suddenly, or a Scripture He'll bring to my mind. Just sit and do as Psalm 46:10 says: "Be still, and know that I am God!" He will speak to you, I promise.

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