Sorrow into Worship (Through the Psalms)
"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 3:22-24
A few verses before this, Jeremiah is in so much pain that he questions the purpose of his life, "He has made my teeth grind on gravel, and made me cower in ashes; 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 3:16-18.
This is such a raw confession and an inside look into the prayer life of a true man of God. For all of us who truly desire to live for God's glory, we will have moments in our lives where we feel like utter failures. Moments where we feel like nothing is going the way we thought it would. Perhaps even times when we are contemplating the purpose of our lives. However, it is in these moments that God is inviting us into a deep encounter with Him. These are the moments where the most beautiful and broken confessions come from our lips, "The LORD is my portion...therefore I will hope in him (v. 24). In our deepest pains we have an opportunity to yield ourselves to the Lord in ways we had never had before. If we are able to offer and give our pain to the Lord, He receives it and in return offers Himself to us. Do not give up. Do not throw in the towel. God is doing a deep work.
How can we endure in moments of pain, regret and doubt?
- Take your eyes off your circumstances and place your eyes on the character and sovereignty of God. Jeremiah says, “But this I call to mind, and there I 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” ^Lamentation 3:22. Jeremiah brings to remembrance who God is.
- Seek the the Lord in prayer and call upon His name. In times of hardship, we must wait upon Him. “The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD” ^Lamentations 3:25-26. Quiet your soul in the presence of the Lord and seek Him and watch his deliverance take place.
- Be active but be patient. Jeremiah is actively being patient. It takes work to be patient! Jeremiah is not patient because it is in his nature. No. Jeremiah is choosing to wait upon the Lord. "The LORD is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD" ^Lamentations 3:25-26. We must be patient and wait upon the Lord to have His way. Do not let impatience stop the Lord from finishing His deep work in your life.