I’ve been studying Jeremiah lately. A majority of the book of Jeremiah is God’s disappointment in His people, Jeremiah’s sorrow and anger towards the people going against God, and the people of Judah continually choosing their selfish desires over God. The people lack repentance, spiritual discipline, and a genuine relationship with God.
Jeremiah, on the other hand, knows God, continues to pursue God, in holiness and righteousness, despite what everyone around him is doing. Jeremiah is living in a land where he does feel like an outsider. He isn’t in the “in-crowd”. But he continues to believe in God and look to God for refreshment and nourishment.
While Jeremiah has thankfulness and hope that the Lord will be gracious to him, he still had his moments where fear and sorrow came in. He, at times, only saw himself as an enemy against the people around him. He made enemies as well with other people. Jeremiah offers out his worries, fears, and cries to the Lord:
"O Lord, you know; remember me and visit me, and take vengeance for me on my persecutors. In your forbearance take me not away; know that for you sake I bear reproach. Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O Lord, God of hosts. I did not sit in the company of revelers, nor did I rejoice; I sat alone, because your hand was upon me, for you had filled me with indignation. Why is my pain unceasing, my wound incurable, refusing to be healed? Will you be to me like a deceitful brook, like waters that fail?" - Jeremiah 15:15-18 ESV
Fear and worries may leave us feeling defeated in our spiritual walk at times because the unknown is scary. But you can miss out on opportunities before you if you don’t continue to walk. You can miss out on learning about God more deeply. You can miss out on gaining wisdom and preparation for the future to come.
Therefore thus says the Lord: "If you return, I will restore you, and you shall stand before me. If you utter what is precious, and not what is worthless, you shall be as my mouth. They shall turn to you, but you shall not turn to them. And I will make you to this people a fortified wall of bronze; they will fight against you, but they shall not prevail over you for I am with you to save you and deliver you, declares the Lord. I will deliver you out of the hand of the wicked, and redeem you from the grasp of the ruthless." - Jeremiah 15:19-21 ESV
We see after Jeremiah cries out to the Lord, that the Lord responds to Jeremiah with a promise. The Lord promises to protect Jeremiah. He encourages Jeremiah to continue to pursue the Lord and walk in obedience. The Lord comforts Jeremiah by giving Him assurance that the Lord is with Him, fighting on his behalf and walking beside Him in this land of wandering people.
Let this be an encouragement that not only does the Lord hear our cries and prayers, but He continues to draw near to us as we draw near to Him. He protects us, comforts us, and offers us grace when we do doubt Him. He wants to cast out all our fears and fill our hearts and minds with deeper trust in Him.