The thought of my suffering and homelessness is bitter beyond words. I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss.
Do you consider that your life has hit rock bottom; do you feel like everything around you has fallen apart and tumbling downhill; has your world come to an end? I may not know the extent of your pain, your suffering, your tears, but I think Jeremiah does.
Jeremiah wrote Lamentations in tears over the devastation that Babylon brought on the Kingdom of Judah. The population was slaughtered like cattle; blood flowed in large quantities on the streets. The Temple, built by King Solomon with vast amounts of gold, was destroyed completely.
That glorious Temple built on Jerusalem’s hills, could be seen from afar on a bright sunny day; it’s beautiful, polished, shiny, glistening, bronze and gold, vessels and decorations, lifted the spirits of all its visitors. It was the light on a hill giving hope to all who lived and visited Jerusalem.
That Temple, full of splendor and hope, was destroyed completely by the Babylonians, no stone was left in its place. Its destruction signaled the end of the world for Jeremiah and all the people of Judah.
In the midst of the anguish, the tears, the depression, the pain, Jeremiah saw a new light at the end of the dark tunnel of despair. What was this new light?
Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!”
Hear! Hear!! God’s mercies begin afresh each morning – wow!!!
This insight, this nugget of revelation, made Jeremiah to say to himself – God is my inheritance, I will hope in him. I will turn my heart away from the Temple which is now ashes; I will turn my heart away from the great history of Judah that gave me such patriotic national pride; I will turn my heart away from my father’s houses and lands which have now been seized by the Babylonians; I will turn my heart away from my splendid academic qualifications which these Babylonians do not recognize.
I will start afresh with the God whose mercies are fresh every morning as my source of strength. My world as I have known it has come to an end. All I have built and trusted in, is now ashes. I mourn and weep, but I have life, so I will start afresh with a God whose “mercies begin afresh each morning” – Amen.
Image: An den Wassern Babylons [By the waters of Babylon] By Gebhard Fugel – Own work (fotografiert in der Ausstellung “Gebhard Fugel 1863-1939. Von Ravensburg nach Jerusalem”. Galerie Fähre, Altes Kloster, Bad Saulgau, 2014), Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=32072371