Jeremiah; November 10, 2022

Jeremiah 15:16 When your words came, I ate them;
they were my joy and my heart’s delight,
for I bear your name,
O Lord God Almighty.

I don’t envy Jeremiah. He was a great prophet of God, yet his life on this earth was anything but easy. In the first chapter of his book he describes his calling from God, and it is beautiful and moving. Here he expresses his attitude toward receiving God’s words. Where the NIV says “came,” the Japanese says, “discovered them.” Today we are more likely to receive God’s words through the Bible than we are to hear them directly, but the image is certainly different. As a people, the Japanese tend to be studious. Bible study is certainly profitable, but we must never reduce the Word of the Lord to an academic pursuit. After all, it is “living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword.” (Hebrews 4:12) Jeremiah was blessed to receive many words from God, and he was faithful to transmit them as called for. That was the cause of most of the difficulties in his life, all the way to his eventual martyrdom, but I’m sure his reward in heaven was, and is, absolutely magnificent. He is a study in and model of faithfulness, and we can all use that. This verse should be true of every believer, but sadly, I don’t think it is. Our “itching ears” (2 Timothy 4:3) prefer other words, and the results are tragic. We don’t often think of Jeremiah as needing to repent, but that’s the language the Lord used with him in verse 19. It he did, then we certainly do! We need to repent of taking God’s word lightly and failing to live it out, of deceiving ourselves (James 1:22) instead of following God. We need to remember that God is not mocked. (Galatians 6:7) Being obedient to Him is the only path to life.

I am currently in mourning, to a degree. I am deeply saddened at some of the results, at least, of the recent election. How could people have voted for some of those candidates that actually won? At this point I don’t know the final results, and I don’t know what tricks might have gone on under the table, but the results aren’t what I had hoped for. I’m thrown back on crying out to God and trusting Him, but that’s not really a bad place to be. Jeremiah might not have accepted his commission if he had known all that he would have to go through. God warned him, both in chapter 1 and in this chapter, and He reminded him at other times as well. I don’t know what God has ahead, for me or for America, but I do know that God is both holy and loving, and He is worthy of my total trust. To this point my way has certainly been easier that what Jeremiah went through, so I am not to complain but keep focusing on my Lord, to be and do what He desires, for His glory.

Father, thank You for this reminder, after the disappointments of yesterday. Thank You for how things are progressing for my wife. Our daughters arrive a week from today! Help me not let anything distract me from the task that You have for me at any given moment, so that like Jeremiah I may be Your agent to do Your will on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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