October 19th, 2017 – DEVOTE


All you have to do is start reading Lamentations chapter 3 and you soon realize you just have more of the same first two chapters. This guy, the guy writing this stuff, is really in the dumps. His life has been hard and he’s spilling it all out, recalling much of it. His heart is heavy, his mind is unstable, and you can tell it.

Ever met anybody like that? When you start having a conversation with them, they talk about the injustices, the tragedies of days gone by. It’s as if they’re stilling living them. They talk about the suffering, the loss, the attacks, the hardships, the hurt and the pain. It’s very real though it may have happened decades ago. It’s kind of like they’re still living it.

That’s what it sounds like when you read Lamentations 3. The prophet says things like…

“He (that’d be God) chased me into a dark place, where no light could enter.” Lamentations 3:2 CEV

“He forced me to sit in the dark like someone long dead.” Lamentations 3:6 CEV

“God built a fence around me that I cannot climb over, and He chained me down.” Lamentations 3:7

This guy’s life is a mess. He’s hurting. He’s lonely. He says…

“I cannot find peace or remember happiness.” Lamentations 3:17 CEV

And…

“That’s all I ever think about, and I am depressed.” Lamentations 3:20 CEV

Maybe you’ve been there. Maybe you’re there now. It’s as if whatever happened, whenever it happened, stunted your life and that part of your life is still locked in that moment of time. You lost something and you’ll never be able to get it back. Believe me, I’ve lived it.

But most often here’s the difference. Unlike the prophet, we stay there – he didn’t! And truthfully, what’s happened is we’ve learned to stay in our rut, to stay there and live there. But here’s what the prophet said after all his lamenting…

“Then I remember something that fills me with hope. The LORD’s kindness never fails! If He had not been merciful, we would have been destroyed. The LORD can always be trusted to show mercy each morning. Deep in my heart I say, ‘The LORD is all I need; I can depend on Him!’” Lamentations 3:21-24 CEV

Listen to me… if you woke up this morning and you’re still here – God has plans for you today. He is faithful. He is kind. He is merciful. He’s not forgotten about you or turned His back on you. He made a promise to be with you always, and believe it or not, He’s keeping it.

Here’s my word of encouragement for you today: Join in with the prophet. He says in chapter 3, verse 40, “… we should think about the way we are living and turn back to the LORD.” That’s a great place to start today – to start living the way He intended you to live. Rise up man of God! Rise up woman of God!

Father,
Capture our attention today. Draw us close to You. In Jesus name we ask this, Amen.

Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen