Today’s Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 25:15-38; Jeremiah 36:1-32; Jeremiah 45:1 through Jeremiah 46:28
“I’ve had it, I can’t do this anymore; I quit!”
When’s the last time you felt this way?
You’re not alone.
Matter of fact, you have biblical company…
“I am overwhelmed with trouble! Haven’t I had enough pain already? And now the Lord has added more! I am worn out from sighing and can find no rest.” –Jeremiah 45:3
When Baruch began his journey with Jeremiah he had visions of greatness. Most likely, he could have gotten a job in the palace since his brother was on the king’s official staff. Instead, Baruch chose to identify with Jeremiah and do the will of God. He also may have thought traveling around with a prophet would be his ticket to making a name for himself. Baruch’s discouragement came when the realities of his “job” clashed with his personal aspiration of greatness–running for his life (Jeremiah 36:19) was not what he had in mind.
God gave Jeremiah a word of encouragement to pass along to Baruch:
Baruch, this is what the Lord says: ‘I will destroy this nation that I built. I will uproot what I planted. Are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t do it! I will bring great disaster upon all these people; but I will give you your life as a reward wherever you go. I, the Lord, have spoken!’
Advice and encouragement, two things we all need when we’re having a “Baruch moment”:
- Don’t build your hopes on the future of this world, because everything will be destroyed. The grass is not greener on the other side–that “soft job” in the palace, would have led to death or exile in Babylon.
- Your life will be spared, so you don’t have to fear the enemy.
During times of discouragement the last thing in the world we want to hear is “be thankful;” count your blessings!” But in reality, Baruch should have been thankful; he was going to escape the disaster of Jerusalem and Judah when everyone else would perish. It’s funny how when it all comes down to living or dying everything seems to settle into its proper place.
It was probably twenty-five years ago when I heard Sue Kirkpatrick, one of Mary Kay Cosmetics’ National Sales Directors speak at a conference and say…
“When I get stressed and overwhelmed—ready to have a “come-a-part”; I ask myself, ‘what does this have to do with eternity’ and everything seems to fall in place.”
As Warren Wiersbe said in Be Decisive, God was proving to Baruch the reality of a promise that would be written centuries later:
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. –Matthew 6:33
Friends, Jesus gave us words of advice and encouragement for our Baruch days:
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23
Lord, I pray for my friends who may be discouraged today. Give them advice and encouragement to finish the race.
In Jesus Name. Amen and Amen!
© 2012 Dianne Guthmuller
Tomorrow’s Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 19:1 through Jeremiah 20:18; Daniel 1:1-21