Friday, March 26th
Jeremiah 29:1, 4-13
The prophet Jeremiah, communicating with the Jews who were exiled in Babylon, is writing to convey God’s message of guidance and encouragement. God tells them to live their lives as they would in Jerusalem. He tells them to build houses, plant and eat what is produced in this other land, marry and have children. An important instruction is to, “Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city…Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” He promises that in seventy years, he will come to the Jews and bring them back to Jerusalem.
My favorite verses are: 11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
My interpretation of those last verses is that God is with us in our trials, our journeys and our everyday lives. He does not promise to remove us from the terrible, distressing and uncomfortable periods in our lives, but if we follow his guidance and his words, then things will work out. As it is so often, we cannot see more than a few feet ahead of where we are in our journey, but God has a plan, and it will be revealed in God’s time, not ours.