Quote from Open Up Your Heart by Jeff Syverson. E-book available from the kindle store at Amazon.com

October 29


Today’s Scripture Readings: Psalm 119:57-64 | Lamentations 1:1 –2:19 | Philemon 1-25| Proverbs 26:20

Today’s Scripture Focus: Lamentations 1

For these things do I weep, My eyes flow with tears: Far from me is any comforter who might revive my spirit (Lamentations 1:16  NIV).

Jeremiah is sometimes called “the Weeping Prophet.” His Lamentations are a prime example. But Jeremiah had reason to weep. He had been given a ministry of calling Judah to repentance, and they refused to listen. They continued on in their idolatrous ways without thought of God. Anyone who has been in ministry knows the frustration of people who don’t hear the message that to us seems so urgent. There are times when all you can do is weep and pray that God will somehow get through to the hearts of his people.

In Lamentations, he sees that his words have come true. God’s judgment has come upon his people. Babylon has come and destroyed the once beautiful city of Jerusalem and her temple and carried off exiles.

Looking to the ruins, with the cries of those who lost loved ones still ringing in his ears, Jeremiah is filled with tears. All he can do is lament.

When confronted by things we can’t understand we must do the same. Laments and tears are a means of healing for our wounded hearts. They are also a powerful means of intercession as we look to God to bring beauty from the ashes.

Know that he sees your tears, he hears your cries of lament. He hasn’t forgotten you; hasn’t forsaken you. The songs of joy will return in time.

Remember that “those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him” (Ps 126:5-6).

Father, see my tears. Hear my cry. I open my heart to you to lament—to bring to you my questions, my fears, my disappointments, my hurt. I look to you for hope and healing. Amen.

About pastorjeffsneighborhood

Born and raised in Minnesota, I have served in churches in Minnesota, Ohio, Oregon and California. I am a graduate of Crown College (MN) and George Fox Evangelical Seminary (OR). I have also done additional graduate studies in New Testament Studies at the Center for Advanced Theological Studies at Fuller Theological Seminary (CA). I am also a graduate of the College of Prayer. Having served as the Academic Dean and Program Director at Horizon Institute of Los Angeles for several years, I have returned to the pastorate and serve as Pastor of Big Trees Community Bible Church in Arnold, CA.
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