Grace CRC Midweek Devotion: Week Four

Grace CRC Midweek Devotion: Week Four

Scripture: Lamentations 3 and 1 Peter 5:6-10

Devotion from ‘A Louder Song’ NavPress: Lamentations is a prime example of a lament—crying out to God in grief or pain. In our reading today, Jeremiah, the weeping prophet and author of Lamentations, is expressing devastation for the horrific suffering of his people.

Lamentations chapter three is the center of Jeremiah’s lament. It is the physical and emotional climax of Lamentations. Chapter three contains the very moment that the prophet’s yearning is most personal and passionate. But just before Jeremiah seems to give into despair—something significant happens. Jeremiah hammers his stake of faith into the ground. “Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope,” declares the prophet. “Because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (3:21-23). Jeremiah utters the most powerful word any of us can utter in our struggles: yet. Yet is the moment the prophet moves from his painful ‘hows’ to his only hope. Yet is the firm foundation, the stake-in-the-ground of all laments. Yet is the hope of God’s loving presence—even when we can’t feel Him. Jeremiah’s yet is found in the unchanging, steadfast love of God. Through his yet, Jeremiah declares, “Even if this suffering never ends, I will always worship God.” Yet is the paradigm shift of all our laments.

Yet arises even when the cancer isn’t cured, when the debt never decreases, when prayers don’t seem to be and answered, when the child continues to struggle, when the questions aren’t answered, when the loved one hurts you again. Yet believes that even if it doesn’t go well with you, Jesus is still enough. His compassionate love is more than enough. Yet is the fighter’s prize. Yet is the hard-won faith. Yet hopes in God, for God’s sake alone.

If we can adopt Jeremiah’s attitude of “yet,” this will lead us to the truest form of worship—the worship of God alone. Not God and blessings, not God and benefits, but God for God’s sake. And no matter how violently the storm rages, “yet” endures. Yet this, “This is horrible. Yet I will praise my God, for He alone is worthy.” Yet is the art of trusting God no matter what He gives, no matter what He takes. Our seasons of lament, if we let them, will either cause us to give into despair, or birth a deeper, more genuine faith—teaching us to stand firm and find new strength. If you are hurting, may you declare your Yet today.

Reflect:

  • Attribute: What attribute of God* stands out to you in today’s reading? Worship Him for who He is and thank Him for the times this attribute has been evidenced to you as a blessing or correction.
  • Pray: Come before Your loving Father and seek forgiveness for the times you lacked trust because you were in a season of lament. Ask Him to refresh your faith and to help you stand firm in the midst of chaos and suffering. Bring this hurting world before Him and seek His mercy and healing. Pray for those ill, bereaved, frightened and alone. Declare your trust no matter what comes. Praise Him for Him alone!
  • One Kind Act: Send 3 emails or texts to 3 people in our church or your neighborhood or family. Select 3 who you do not normally communicate with. Thank them for being who they are and tell them you care and appreciate them.

*Eternal, incomprehensible, invisible, unchangeable, infinite, almighty; wise, good, loving, gracious, merciful, patient, holy, righteous, sovereign.

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