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Yesterday though just busy in activity, must have been more tiring than I realized. After being up early this morning, I found myself fairly tired. I laid down for a 30 minute nap and it turned into almost an hour and a half!
I did get out after that and ran some errands, including turning in our ballots. It is always interesting how much longer it takes to "run some quick errands." I returned home just in time to make it on time for my appointment with my fitness trainer. It was a good workout and I can tell we are working some muscles that have not been worked or developed like they need to be.
After returning home and quick lunch, I went out and began to tackle the leaves in our yard. I remember when we were first in our home in Lakewood and I never had to rake leaves because we didn't have any trees in those early years. Maybe those days were so bad after all!
BIBLE VERSE FOR TODAY... "But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end;they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” Lamentations 3:21-24
Lamentations doesn't have very many encouraging and inspiring verses. The ones above are some of those, but are found tucked into the lengthy third chapter of this book that is a book of mourning. God's people have ignored for generations God's law and God's prophets. They have done their own thing and gone their own way, believing that God had already rejected them or believing that God would not really drive them away from "their land."
God's people had become a "helpless" and "hopeless" people. The description of their condition is graphic and depressing. Consider the following:
"...he has driven and brought me into darkness without any light...He has made my flesh and my skin waste away...he has broken my bones...he has besieged and enveloped me with bitterness and tribulation...He has walled me about so that I cannot escape...though I call and cry for help, he shuts out my prayer...He drove into my kidneys the arrows of his quiver...I have become the laughingstock of all peoples...the object of their taunts all day long." (Lamentations 3:19)
If this is not enough, the following verse perhaps is a fitting summary of a deplorable condition, "my soul is bereft of peace; I have forgotten what happiness is; so I say, “My endurance has perished; so has my hope from the Lord.” (Lamentations 3:20)
Then all of a sudden after a lengthy description of being forsaken by God, ridiculed by man, in pain, in anguish, strength and hope is gone, in the recesses of the heart is one last grasp in an attempt to hold on to the God who is there, even when we don't feel, think or believe He is there. There is the reminder that, "the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, His mercies never come to an end..."
Jeremiah finds hope when, all hope is gone. Hope in circumstances, human resources, "time healing wounds" is hope in vain. There is only one place of everlasting hope and that is found in the steadfast love of the Lord and His mercies. When we find that source of hope, we have renewed strength, we have a fresh wind of endurance that helps us to keep on keeping on.
I notice that the prophet declares, "The Lord is my portion says my soul..." He doesn't say mind because that doesn't make sense; he doesn't say heart because circumstances don't allow you to feel that way; he doesn't say body because the physical condition is all but done in. Our soul is what superintends all other aspects of our being. The old hymn is entitled, "It is Well with my Soul." When it is well with our soul, it is well with our world. When your hope is in the Lord's love and mercy, hope is never lost.