Lamentations 3:21-24 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. I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”
‘The Lamentations of Jeremiah’ is an apt title given to this book of the Bible. The much maligned and persecuted prophet pours out his heart before God over the destruction of Jerusalem – Zion, the LORD’s HOLY DWELLING PLACE! And in Chapter 3 he relives the extremely harsh treatment that he, himself, has received at THE LORD’S HAND, concluding with the desperate cry, “So I say, ‘My splendour is gone and all that I had hoped from the LORD.’”! ALL seems HOPE-LESS DESPAIR, even though it is just the predictable result of the sinful rebellion of God’s covenant people.
So these verses in the middle of this chapter are a powerful testimony to Jeremiah’s indestructible TRUST in the FAITHFULNESS of his God, the LORD, Jehovah/Yahweh.
Although we are living in difficult times at the moment – perhaps more challenging than we have ever experienced before, most of us have not had to suffer even a fraction of what Jeremiah went through. (Nevertheless, I suspect that there are many Christians in some parts of the world today who might come close!) So, let us take time to search our hearts during the lifestyle-changing pandemic restrictions, and ask ourselves, “Do we share this Prophet’s confidence in God’s FAITHFULNESS in the face of our relatively minor struggles?”
Significantly, from our historical perspective, we can see how Jeremiah’s experience foreshadowed the life and death of Jesus; and HIS RESURRECTION to POWER is the crowning proof of God’s faithfulness. Therefore, we are without excuse if we FAIL to taste deeply of God’s LOVE and COMPASSION, EVERY MORNING. I remember reading of a missionary who reflected, “We are not really qualified to sing with honesty, ‘Jesus is all I want’, until Jesus IS ALL we’ve GOT!” Can I truly say “Amen” to Jeremiah’s, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will WAIT for him.”? I note that the Hebrew word for ‘wait’ is the same word translated ‘hope’ in verse 21 and carries with it the idea of ‘patient but CONFIDENT expectation’, the general Biblical concept of ‘HOPE’.
What a challenge Jeremiah is to me today!