Jeremiah 30:1-10 (NIV)

This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD: 2 “This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘Write in a book all the words I have spoken to you. 3 The days are coming,’ declares the LORD, ‘when I will bring my people Israel and Judah back from captivity and restore them to the land I gave their forefathers to possess,’ says the LORD.” 4 These are the words the LORD spoke concerning Israel and Judah: 5 “This is what the LORD says: ” ‘Cries of fear are heard– terror, not peace. 6 Ask and see: Can a man bear children? Then why do I see every strong man with his hands on his stomach like a woman in labor, every face turned deathly pale?7 How awful that day will be! None will be like it. It will be a time of trouble for Jacob, but he will be saved out of it. 8 ” ‘In that day,’ declares the LORD Almighty, ‘I will break the yoke off their necks and will tear off their bonds; no longer will foreigners enslave them.9 Instead, they will serve the LORD their God and David their king, whom I will raise up for them. 10 ” ‘So do not fear, O Jacob my servant; do not be dismayed, O Israel,’ declares the LORD. ‘I will surely save you out of a distant place, your descendants from the land of their exile. Jacob will again have peace and security, and no one will make him afraid.

Jeremiah 30:2 (NRSV)

Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, “Write in a book all the words that I have spoken to you.”

DEVOTION – Eric Burton-Krieger(Tennessee)

This passage from Jeremiah reminds me how short our memories can be.  Jeremiah speaks to the people on behalf of the Lord in a time of upheaval.  But before giving Jeremiah the message, God tells the prophet, “Write this down.”  Surely the people would not forget these powerful words of hope coming to them at a time of such deep grief, fear, and pain!

Yet the peace or prosperity, we can quickly forget the trials of the past.  This forgetting is dangerous, however, because it allows us to think we’re self-sufficient and in control of our lives.  Sometimes even in despair and suffering we can forget as well – forget the hope and the assurance from God that our present situation is not the end.

The season of Lent comes each year as a time to help us remember.  We reflect on our God who in Christ knows what it is to suffer and who meets us in our suffering to offer us hope.  Discipleship is about remembering – remembering that to follow God is to hear the cries of those suffering and to offer hope that only God can bring, to remember that peace is not something we achieve on our own.  May this Lent be such a time for each of us.

THOUGHT FOR THE DAY: Remember God’s love and be thankful.

PRAYER:  Dear Lord God, help us this day to remember that you are present with those who suffer and with those who are well. Amen.

PRAYER FOCUS: Those Who Have Forgotten God’s Love