Key Verse: Jeremiah 9:1
Oh, that my head were waters,
And my eyes a fountain of tears,
That I might weep day and night
For the slain of the daughter of my people!
Jeremiah experienced the broken heart of God and he wept! “Jesus wept” (John 11:35), and He also wept over Jerusalem! Jesus said, “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, but you were not willing!” (Luke 13:34). The sorrow of Jeremiah is over, but the sorrow of Jesus, because He is alive and He sees all, continues to this very day. Jesus’ compassion continues in His mercy and willingness to forgive us our sins. If we have caused Him to weep over us currently, turn back to Him now. The most often repeated verse in the Bible is, “His mercy endures forever” (the entire 136th Psalm).
According to my son-in-law, Rev. Nizar Shaheen, who reads the Old Testament in the original languages, Jeremiah 10:11 is not in Hebrew but in the universal language of the time, Aramaic. Jeremiah wanted all nations to know that their gods would perish! It was believed that these gods controlled the heavens and the earth, but Jeremiah proclaimed that the Lord God of Israel, the sole Creator of the universe, has sovereign control of it all (read again Jeremiah 10:11-13).
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God of Jeremiah, I recognize that You, and You alone, are the great Creator, and that You, and You alone, took upon Yourself my sin and wrong when You suffered on the Cross. I weep over my sin and over the sin of the world. May I, like Jeremiah, proclaim Your Truth and Your Mercy to the world around me in a way that people can understand. I pray in the Name of the Saviour Who wept over the needs of all people, the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen!!!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
I stood in amazement on the street in front of the Ethiopian Orthodox Cathedral in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital city, as I heard a young priest preaching at the top of his voice that the terrible famine which had devastated the country was the result of the people turning away from God. He did this despite the risk in a country with an atheistic, communist government that had seized power and executed all male members of the family of the late Emperor Haile Selassie. This young man was fearless! He also proclaimed that if the people would turn back to God, He would have mercy on them. Crossroads raised, with matching funds from the Canadian Government, over 7 million dollars for the Ethiopian famine relief. I have no doubt that we were a part of the answer to the weeping prayers of the Ethiopian people. In fact, it was the tears of a former Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. Joe Clark, who was seen to weep on the national Canadian news, as he visited Ethiopia on his way home from the funeral of Indira Ghandi of India. There was an immediate initiative to act and give to help save lives.
Our present Prime Minister, the Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper, has just returned home from his first visit to Jerusalem. He was seen to pray at what is known as “The Wailing Wall” (picture below). Here, Jews and some non-Jews pray and sometimes weep and wail because of the destruction of Jerusalem. The word “wailing” is repeated three times in today’s reading. Several times during my life, in times of great crisis, I have experienced “wailing,” but not when anyone could hear me. After the death of loved ones in the Middle East, one can often hear the sound of wailing. The people are not ashamed of expressing their extreme grief. These people say that we who live in the west do not know how to grieve properly in order to express our pain. We do tend to keep it all inside and psychologists tell us that failure to express our deep grief is emotionally harmful.
Yours for genuine sorrow for our sins and for those things that break God’s heart!