Saturday, May 5, 2018

May 6, 2018

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

I have a whole new level of excitement about this great promise from God penned by His choice Prophet Jeremiah. This higher level of excitement is due to taking the time to study the entire context of this verse.

Back in Homiletics Class they taught me that, "A text without a context is a pretext." That is more true than I realized back then! It is certainly true for Jeremiah 29!

Just to realize this promise was given to people who had been taken into captivity as judgment from God, that alone is exciting as you realize His promises apply to people with less than perfect lives. He remains faithful even when we aren't.

So far our study of this Chapter has revealed:

1) Our lives can get messy when we miss the mark on God's will

2) God wants to help you make the best of the mess in your life

3) Prayer can help you manage your mess

4) You need to make sure you don't make a greater mess by believing bad information

And, today we learn that God wants you to meet Jesus in the middle of your mess!

"Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.” Jeremiah 29:12-14

Here is what I have discovered in my life of ministry, the messes of life either drive people closer to God or further away from Him. Jeremiah makes it clear that God hopes and desires that the hardships of His judgment will nudge you in His direction. Or, as in the case of this Chapter, push them back to God!

Another thing I have discovered is that it is in the midst of a messy life that people finally turn to God! God is fine with that! Jesus is always ready to meet you in the midst of your mess!

Missing God's mark and making your life messy may complicate your life and cause pain, but it cannot separate you from His presence, His promises or His plan!

If you have messed up and missed His mark don't give up in your mess up. 'Fess up and repent and meet up with Jesus in the midst of your mess! When you do you will discover He was there all the time!