“Is Ephraim my dear son? is he a pleasant child? for since I spake against him, I do earnestly remember him still: therefore my bowels are troubled for him; I will surely have mercy upon him, saith the LORD” (Jeremiah 31:20).TEXT — Jeremiah 31:18-23
Present experiences, especially when they are not pleasant, tend to influence our character and conduct in a moment of time. We form the impression that all is lost and that help can no longer come to us. This pushes us into self-pity and sometimes we literally begin to weep for ourselves in the face of what we perceive as a hopeless situation. Just when we least expect it, God steps in to help us.
Israel, represented here by the tribe of Ephraim, had been taken into captivity. Their lives had been characterised by lamentation and bitter weeping, as they daily watched the destruction of their young ones. It was at such a time that God sent a message of comfort to them through Prophet Jeremiah to stop weeping and that He had not forgotten them. In fact, He promised to reward their work, bring them back from captivity and show mercy to them because He remembered and yearned to fellowship with them again. They would become a pleasant testimony to the justice and holiness of God. They would prosper and flourish in their land again. With such good news, they needed no other encouragement to repent of their sins and turn again to God.
Irrespective of how deep in sin anyone may have gone, God still loves him or her. He does not enjoy a sinner’s pain and sorrow. It saddens Him to see anyone suffer. He has gracious and glorious plans for everyone. All He expects is for the penitent seeker to abandon all sinful ways and turn to Him whole-heartedly. The ball is in everyone’s court now. Make the first move and return to God, and watch Him unfurl His blessings upon you.
Thought for the day
Hope is the best tonic for a sick heart.
- in one year
- PROVERBS 30 – 31