Saturday, July 8 ~ Praying to trust God when I’m very sad

Lamentations 3

I said to myself, “I no longer have any hope

    that the Lord will help me.”

Remember, I am very sad,

    and I have no home.

    Remember the bitter poison that you gave me.

I remember well all my troubles,

    and I am very sad.

But then I think about this,

    and I have hope:

We are still alive because

    the Lord’s faithful love never ends.

Every morning he shows it in new ways!

    You are so very true and loyal!

I say to myself, “The Lord is my God,

    and I trust him.”

The Lord is good to those who wait for him.

    He is good to those who look for him.

It is good to wait quietly

    for the Lord to save them.

God gave Jeremiah an impossible task.  He had to tell the nation that ‘there’s good news and there’s bad news’ and the good won’t come for at least seventy years.  It finally came fully in the body of Jesus about six hundred years later.  Jeremiah went through personally and emotionally what the whole nation was about to go through — that’s what it took for him to communicate with the power and intensity he found.  Jeremiah came to believe that God was loving and trustworthy even in the midst of terrible circumstances — the worst that people can experience.  Loss, grief, dislocation, exile, despair, loneliness, rejection, humiliation, fear, starvation — the whole nine yards.  Jesus’ first Beatitude, “Blessed are the poor in spirit” could come with a picture of Jeremiah.  For three pathetic chapters Jeremiah enumerates all his troubles, and then he uses one of the Scriptures’ most important words: “But.”  He was as harshly realistic as a person could be — BUT — he then was able to “think” this great thought:  “the Lord’s faithful love never ends.”  It may seem like God’s “love” has ended, but it really hasn’t.  The skill and disciple of faith is to “wait quietly for the Lord to save.”  What I need to learn is how to believe in God’s “love” one “morning” at a time, as long as it takes for God’s ultimate “good” to arrive.

Lord, teach me the endurance of faith.  I want to feel better and restored right now.  But you have taught me that ‘Love is patient,’ so I need to put a ‘but’ after my sadness.  I will patiently love you, God, while you implement your long range plan for my ultimate and complete good.  Amen.

~ by Steve Moore