Sometimes we look around at our circumstances and we become nostalgic for the old days. As I wrote to a young lady feeling nostalgic, “Nostalgia can be fun for an evening of ‘remember when’s.’ However, when we look back, we do so to see from where we’ve come. Then we look forward to see where The Lord is taking us.”
The Babylonian captives no doubt had constant feelings of nostalgia, longing for their beloved Jerusalem and the days of Solomon’s temple. In Jeremiah 29 we find the prophet writing a letter to them exhorting them to build houses relying on the promise that God would rescue them after 70 years. Many a Christian’s life verse is Jeremiah 29:11, but it is wrapped around some heavenly nuggets:
“For thus says the Lord: After seventy years are completed at Babylon, I will visit you and perform My good word toward you, and cause you to return to this place. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back from your captivity; I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you, says the Lord, and I will bring you to the place from which I cause you to be carried away captive.” (Jeremiah 29:10-14)
Too many today would receive such a letter with a sense of hopelessness. Oh my goodness, God is really going to make us wait 70 years?! Doesn’t He know how bad we have it here?! And now He wants us to build houses and plant gardens?! It as though if God doesn’t work out the situation in the way we see fit, then all will end in failure. What’s that? I’m the only one who thinks that way at times? So be it, then just eavesdrop…
We as a people, as a church, and as a nation have either forgotten or minimized the sovereignty of God in the affairs of man. Rather or not our Founding Fathers were born-again believers may be up for debate, but one thing is for sure: they recognized the sovereignty of God in the affairs of man.
“The Lord brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; He makes the plans of the peoples of no effect. The counsel of the Lord stands forever, the plans of His heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He has chosen as His own inheritance.” (Psalm 33:10-12)
Would to God that I and others who struggle with allowing God to have His way in my life remember the words of Major W. Ian Thomas. In his devotional titled, “What Can Jesus Do?”, Major Thomas writes:
“Can any situation possibly arise, under any circumstances, for which the Lord Jesus is less than adequate? Any pressure, promise, problem, responsibility, or temptation? If He be truly God, not one!”
I’ve often encouraged the discouraged to do as the old hymn “Count Your Many Blessings” advises. However, it is actually an endless and impossible task to complete because we’ve forgotten more of what God has done for us than we could possibly recall. David understood this and it is what encouraged him to stay the course:
“Blessed is that man who makes the Lord his trust, and does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies. Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works which You have done; and Your thoughts toward us cannot be recounted to You in order; if I would declare and speak of them, they are more than can be numbered.” (Psalm 40:4-5)
Today the Supreme Court will release their ruling on California’s marriage amendment and the government’s refusal to enforce DOMA. I expect the court to rule in favor of homosexual marriage, by even a 6-3 vote. It will be a loss for America, but not for God and His Holy Word. Biblical truth will forever stand the tests of time.
The question is will we. Will we trust that our Lord Jesus is never less than adequate, or will we give up hope?
As for me and my house, our hope is in the Lord!
If you’re receiving these devotionals for the first time and would like to receive them on a regular basis, please email me at email@example.com and use “Please add to Devotional List” as the subject.
Copyright © 2013 David Jeffers