I’m sure Jeremiah asked that question plenty of times. The weeping prophet had so much to say. He never held it back.
You’ve got to love Jeremiah, for there is one in us all. One that is more than familiar with those parched places.
Thus says the LORD:
“Cursed is the man who trusts in man And makes flesh his strength, Whose heart departs from the LORD. For he shall be like a shrub in the desert, And shall not see when good comes, But shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, In a salt land which is not inhabited. “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, And whose hope is the LORD. For he shall be like a tree planted by the waters, Which spreads out its roots by the river, And will not fear when heat comes; But its leaf will be green, And will not be anxious in the year of drought, Nor will cease from yielding fruit. “The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it? I, the LORD, search the heart, I test the mind, Even to give every man according to his ways, According to the fruit of his doings.”
Jeremiah 17:5-10 NKJV
No one likes to be in parched places.
Lost and lonely places.
Chaotic and confusing places.
I am tired of the dry places.
In the lack.
That is where God calls us.
He spoke to Jeremiah….
Before I formed you in the womb
(Before you were even a thought He was thinking of you.)
(Before you were conceived.)
I knew you.
Before you were born
(He carefully played this out.)
I sanctified you.
I ordained you as a prophet to the nations.
My Own Translation…
God has ordained you.
He has ordained me.
Ordain is to anoint, appoint, call, commission, deal with, decree, institute, rule or set.
You have got to DEAL with some stuff. When the going gets tough right? It is all our perseverance.
We always throw our conditions, our weaknesses, our limitations and analytical questions to God during these trying moments.
“We have a debilitating flaw to be self-critical.”
We take this to the tenth power. Over extreme behavior and self-evaluation. To the point where it hinders our progress.
“Ah, Sovereign Lord, but I cannot speak, for I am a youth.”
Why would God call someone who could not speak? Is that really the case? Or that He chose to use some young and inexperienced kid with no credentials?
God told him–“STOP SAYING THAT!”
We are always overcome with some form of dread of what we could not -should not or the don’ts. God had an answer for him immediately.
“Do not say, ‘I am youth,’ For you shall go to all whom I send you and whatever I command you, you shall speak!
Do not be afraid of their faces, for I am with you to deliver you,” says the Lord.
God’s way of dealing with us is always so fierce. Just like parents. They say, “NO!” We ask, “Why?” Then they respond with the famous, “Because I said so that’s why!”
WOW, that makes a whole lot of sense right? NO, it doesn’t. We want a logical explanation for everything. We want to know why are things the way that they are. Why God? Why?
Why did you put me here?
Why am I hurt?
Why am I sad?
Why was I the victim?
Why did I get divorced?
Why was I abandoned?
Why was it so difficult?
Why do I have to do this? Why? Why??? So many question that we have for God with minimal answers. No map. No clues. No guidance at times. We feel lost, lonely, disconnected from life support, anxious and in despair.
But God has a way. His own way of dealing with us. We’ll get it. We shall understand. We shall see the light. The parched place will come to lift off. We will pass through that valley of Baca. We will make it to the spring wells. The time will arrive for our peace and sanity. Clarity will be present. Understanding will no longer escape us. That moment will arrive when we get it.
God’s got this. We are back at Jeremiah 17. That powerful prayer that we will make like Jeremiah. He was in some sort of anguish. Sadness. Frustration. Hardships. The strongest advice is still coming through the darkest tunnels.
Choose not to be this way. We have the power to turn things around. NO one else has control over your emotions. Ask for the strength to be free of all of that!
Sigh. The history that you been through is not a place of pain or disgrace! It is not a place of defeat. THIS IS WHERE YOU HAVE OVERCOME! This is your place of grace! This is your source of blessing.
Those parched places will turn into those places of grace.
Thank you man of God.
Jeremiah did it and so shall the rest of us. It is all our perseverance. As the Merriam-Webster 2016 defines as a quality that allows someone to continue trying to do something even though it is difficult.
Perseverance produces character and character HOPE!
We are coming out of these parched places. We are coming out and will be holding that banner high!