Click on Text Link to Read Online
Focus Verses: Jeremiah 20:13-14
13 Sing to the LORD! Give praise to the LORD! He rescues the life of the needy from the hands of the wicked. 14 Cursed be the day I was born! May the day my mother bore me not be blessed!
contrast of these two consecutive verses is extreme and abrupt enough
to give you whiplash. In one breath, Jeremiah says, "Praise God!" In the
next he says, "I wish I had never been born!" The sheer resolve of
verse thirteen stands out like a brilliant rose in this chapter of
thorns and thistles.
The message Jeremiah had been
called to preach was one of doom and judgment. The responses he got
from people were rejection, violence, and hate. Jeremiah's life was
filled with sorrow and pain because he was faithful to God's calling
and God's message. Yet, in the midst of his pain he resolutely
declared, "Sing to the Lord! Give Praise to the Lord!"
his suffering was unbearable, Jeremiah said, "I believe God sees my
need and he will rescue me from the wicked." Jeremiah's praise was not a
response to blessing and comfort he had already received, but was
instead a profound statement of his faith. It was an expression of hope
from a person in great pain.
Response and Action:
is more than a response to blessing, it is an act of faith! I will
praise God in times of blessing, but I will also praise him in times of
need. I will sing songs of thanks when I am in a place of ease and
comfort, but I will also worship him when I am in distress. My praise
will be more than an expression of gratitude for what God has done, it
will be a testimony of my faith in what God will do.
God, whether by life or by death may Christ be exalted in me. You are
worthy of my praise at all times. I believe you are faithful to your
promises and I will praise you because I believe you will never fail to
keep your word. Open my mouth Lord, and my lips will declare your
Spiritual Formation Verses: Romans 8:35-39
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or
hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered." 37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39
neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be
able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our
Where Is God When It Hurts?
by Philip Yancey