Today’s Bible reading and an excerpt

Read Jeremiah 29:1-14

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Image result for philadelphia regionMore thoughts for meditation

The people who were carried away into Babylon were told to “Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” They were to settle in and have families and work the land. But they always knew they had somewhere else for which they were destined. They knew God was going to bring them home. Even if they were not so prosperous now, even if they were exiles in a foreign land, they knew they had a future.

This piece of faith logic is better than the general philosophy of our day, which says anything that happens to us is what we get, and anything we make of what happens to us is what we will have. We are taught that we are the promise of the future. How does that appear to be working these days? Even if it appears to be working, it is not true, anyway.

We are exiles in the Philly region. For most of us, it feels like home and we have already found ways to seek the peace and prosperity of our territory. Others of us feel like we just happen to be here and don’t have much of a vision; you might not even love where you are at! Regardless of how comfortable we feel or how we arrived where we are, the Lord is with us. That’s why we can settle in and do good, even though we know we are, ultimately, on the way home.

Suggestion for action

Trusting God for our future takes a change of mind, right? Do any of us have the innate capability to do what the scripture (and the Holy Spirit) calls us to today? Even if we did have the capability, we would still have the world in opposition to trusting God for our future, because it decidedly does not. Trusting God for our future requires resistance to what the world teaches us in every class, in every business plan, in 80% of the laws and with 80% of the ever-present advertisements. Let’s pray for each other, since changing our minds and not having them changed back is hard.

Do you think an end-of-the-year inventory would help you think about trusting Jesus to lead you through the place you will be in 2019? Write down the ways you think you trusted in yourself more than God in 2018. What are significant examples of being lead by fear, or self-centeredness rather than by the Lord?