"The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore I have hope in Him."Lamentations 3:24(NASB)
It must have been devastating for the prophet Jeremiah to witness the fall of Jerusalem, the enslavement of his people, and the destruction of the holy Temple of God. He knew that the reason for this painful period in Israel's problematic history, was due to the gross sin and spiritual adultery of God's chosen people.
Here, we witness Jeremiah mourning for both the downfall of the city of Jerusalem and the shocking sinfulness of the nation. In his book of deep lamentation, he pens five distinct dirges that rehearse the reason for Israel's calamity. But we also discover him offering reproof, instruction, direction in righteousness, and hope for the future to those that survived the city's devastating destruction.
And so we discover that the weight of his sorrow and the traumatic grief that hung so heavily on the heart of this weeping prophet, was interspersed with echoes of hope and whispers of God's amazing love and grace.
Over many centuries of their history, the Lord had proved Himself to be faithful to the erring children of Israel. Jeremiah had witnessed God's long-suffering mercy, but also understood that God is both righteous and just... and must therefore, punish evil. And so, in the midst of all the trauma and pain, Jeremiah is able to declare, "the LORD is my portion.. therefore, I have hope in Him."
From the inner depths of his very being, Jeremiah was able to proclaim that Jehovah was his Heritage. God was his Portion, and the Lord was his Helper. And so, despite the terrible circumstances through which he was going, Jeremiah chose to place his hope and his trust in God. He decided to wait expectantly for Him to direct and govern his future - and that of the faithful remnant of Israel.
Despite the inner turmoil that grieved his soul and the outer destruction he witnessed with his own eyes, this man was able to stand firm on his hope in God - knowing that His mercies are new every morning, for the Lord is a faithful God and true to His Word - and the same holds true today.
As we see the systematic destruction of sound doctrine in Christianity today, as apostate teachers and false prophets infiltrate the churches of Christendom and seek to destroy the very foundation of our faith... and as we watch the shocking inhumanity of man towards his fellows, and the unbelievable corruption that floods the corridors of government - our hearts also grieve.. as we witness this painful period in our own problematic history.
But like Jeremiah, we know in Whom we have believed and are persuaded that He is able to keep us and all that we have committed to Him. No matter what we may be called upon to suffer in this transitory life, we KNOW that God is faithful and will not suffer us to be tempted above that which we are able to bear, but will make a way of escape so that we may be able to bear it.
God is indeed faithful to His Word which cannot be broken... and so with the grieving Jeremiah, we too can trace the rainbow through the rain and proclaim, "The Lord is my portion - therefore I have hope in Him."
Heavenly Father, there are times when it seems that I am alone as I face life's difficulties, mourn over the spiritual decline that is overtaking the Church today, and grieve to see the shocking evil that is saturating the world. Thank You, Lord, that I am not alone, but am one of a remnant of believers who desires to do Your will. Thank You that Your mercies are new every morning and that You are building up Your church to Your praise and glory. In Jesus' name I pray, AMEN.