He was a prophet that endured.
His audiences were usually apathetic or antagonistic. He was often ignored, and his life was threatened. He had seen the excitement of spiritual awakening in his nation under King Josiah of Judah. But he also lived to agonize over his nation's return to idolatry.
He saw fellow prophets murdered. He felt his people reject God's love.
Even when he was angry with God and tempted to give up, Jeremiah knew he had to keep going.
God had called him to endure.
Today's "Bible Pick 'Ems" is an excerpt from a little dialogue that God had with Jeremiah:
"Do not be afraid of them…For see, today I have made you strong like a fortified city that cannot be captured, like an iron pillar or a bronze wall. You will stand…They will fight you, but they will fail. For I am with you, and I will take care of you. I, the LORD, have spoken!" (Jeremiah 1:17-19)
Jeremiah had a difficult task. God knew that. And He promised to be with Jeremiah.
We can take this message to heart, too.
Our problems may not seem as *ominous* as Jeremiah's (unless you read the newspaper or watch the news!!) – but they are critical to us, and we often feel overwhelmed.
But God gives us the same promise that He gave Jeremiah – nothing will defeat us completely. HE will help us through the most overpowering struggles and situations.
I'd like to finish by focusing on one word from our verses – the word TODAY.
I love how the LORD says that He will make us strong…today.
How often are we daunted because we insist on looking forward into the future – a future that seems so ominous and out of our control?
It's important to remember that the same God who provided manna in the wilderness – manna for each day, I might add – is the One who gives us our daily bread.
Give us THIS day our daily bread.
We are provided the strength we need to face today – today! There isn't strength for tomorrow until tomorrow arrives. God is a present help – and I believe that means He operates best in our NOW.
So, what are you facing today?
Financial problems, health issues, family difficulties, spiritual challenges?
Well, God has a message for you –
"Do not be afraid of all those things.
Do not be afraid of the enemy.
For see, today I have made you strong like a fortified city that cannot be captured, like an iron pillar or a bronze wall.
You will stand.
Oh, life will fight you, and prepare for some enemy attacks.
But life will not defeat you, and the enemy will fail.
For I am with you, and I will take care of you."
And I just LOVE this ending…
"I, the LORD, have spoken!"
Yes, indeed He has.
What do you need God's strength for – today? How can you trust God for His daily bread?
"When in doubt, search God out!"