The Weeping Prophet

Author: Joyce Yearsley

Did you ever have one of those days? Everything goes wrong… Let’s just forget having one of those days. Let’s say you’ve had one of those years. The entire year seems to be fraught with sorrow, loss and disappointment. Think for a minute, I bet you can remember such a time.

Why do we sometimes seem to be the target in a combat zone? Well, you already know the answer to that. We live in a fallen world. “Man is born for trouble, as sparks fly upward.” (Job 5:7 and Linus van Pelt) Even creation groans and suffers because of sin and waits for redemption (Romans 8:21-23). Man is utterly fallen, the world is fallen, so we have bad days, weeks, even sometimes bad years. But there’s another reason: a God-reason. God uses our suffering to change us, to refine us and sadly, sometimes to discipline us.

You aren’t alone. I can remember a year (or two) like that. Elizabeth was critically ill, Jim was in the hospital with pneumonia, still grieving over the loss of his dad the year before, landlord troubles, major car trouble, our finances were devastated from medical bills, and on it went.

In fact, we can look into God’s word and find a man who had it worse: No, this time it isn’t Job, rather Jeremiah. If we look at Lamentations 3, we see what Jeremiah’s life looked like: loss, pain, darkness, suffering, adversity, hated by men. No wonder he is called The Weeping Prophet. And probably most disappointing of all, Jeremiah knew that it was really the Lord who had afflicted him, who had allowed all this stuff to happen. The Lord chose to use Jeremiah to rebuke His people, to warn them, but also to bring them hope.

In the midst of his great suffering, Jeremiah wrote the words that have become one of the greatest short praise hymns of our time.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases.

His mercies never come to an end.

They are new every morning.

Great is Thy faithfulness O Lord.

How could Jeremiah think like this? How could he write about God’s mercies while cold, hungry and sick in a pit? Jeremiah didn’t have Instagram to drum up sympathy for himself by posting a photo of his misery. He didn’t have GO FUND ME to collect money to bribe his way out of the pit. He didn’t even have Facebook so he could rally his friends to his plight. He had the Lord. And that was enough. Because God really is enough.

Always enough. All the time.

Jeremiah had something some believers lack: a thorough working knowledge of the Lord Himself. At times, God spoke directly to Jeremiah. Other times, it was important for Jeremiah to know, listen to and obey God’s word.

Because we live in fallen bodies in a fallen world, we will have bad days, weeks and even years. Because the steadfast love of the Lord never ceases and His faithfulness is so great, we can still live in victory in this world, striving against sin and looking forward to that blessed hope.


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