#021: Having Hope in the Face of Disaster

It seems that every year somewhere in the world some devastating event occurs that takes the lives of hundreds, or even thousands, and often leaves, even more, people homeless.

Jerusalem Ruins, Disaster

This devastation comes in the form of earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, disease, and starvation just to name a few. While you may not have faced such devastation yourself, you may know someone who has.

Do you have hope even in the face of disaster? You need to look no further than the book of Lamentations to see an incredible example of hope in God in the face of disaster!

The author (probably Jeremiah) who wrote the poetic book of Lamentations wrote five laments containing 22 verses each (except for the third lament which is 66 verses (3 x 22)). Chapters 1 & 5 are overall summaries, chapters 2 & 4 are more detailed while chapter 3 reveals God’s compassion. Chapters 1-4 are each in the form of an acrostic, with the first word of each verse beginning with one of the 22 letters of the Hebrew alphabet.

Background: Jerusalem has been sacked by the Babylonian army, the temple has been burned, and the people have been carried away in captivity (587 B.C.). In the book of Lamentations the author describes the siege of Jerusalem, the famine in the city, the flight of the Judean army, the burning of the temple, the palace, and the city, the breaching of the city walls, the exile of the people, the looting of the temple, the execution of the leaders, the captivity of the people, and the lack of expected foreign help. In other words, life is not going well, and prospects for the future are not looking all that promising either! Have you had a time like that in your life?

Lamentations 3:19-24 (ESV)
19 Remember my affliction and my wanderings, the wormwood and the gall!
20 My soul continually remembers it and is bowed down within me.
21 But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:
22 The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
24 “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”

The author confirms that belief in God’s mercy and faithfulness is key to a restored relationship with God. Despite all the disasters, travails, and sufferings of the past he has hope because,

  1. God’s love is steadfast,
  2. God’s love never ceases,
  3. God’s mercies never end, and
  4. God is forever faithful.

Therefore, he will place his hope for the future on God.

Application

What disaster, what suffering, what sin, what error in our life is greater than God’s love for us, His children? The answer is no suffering, no sin, no error, no nothing is greater than His love for us! Our hope for the future is not in man but in our Heavenly Father!

Join the Conversation

As always questions and comments are welcome! Do you accept God’s mercy and faithfulness? Can you appropriate it into your life? Do you sometimes struggle to accept God’s grace?

Category: Personal Development | Dependence on God

 

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