- Lam. 3:1-5:22
Today we conclude our two-day reading of the book of Lamentations, a collection of sad songs or poems most likely penned by the prophet Jeremiah, following the destruction of Jerusalem in 586 B.C. In Lam. 3, Jeremiah writes about his own personal suffering. GOD has protected Jeremiah from death, but his life has not been a pleasant existence, to say the least. Jeremiah suffered a lot of ridicule and persecution as GOD's messenger.
13 He pierced my heart with arrows from his quiver. 14 I became the laughingstock of all my people; they mock me in song all day long. 15 He has filled me with bitter herbs and given me gall to drink. 16 He has broken my teeth with gravel; he has trampled me in the dust. 17 I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is. 18 So I say, “My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the LORD.” 19 I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. 20 I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.
(Lam. 3:13-20 NIV)
Jeremiah immediately follows these sad thoughts with a reminder, one that is extremely helpful during times of suffering:
21 Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: 22 Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. 24 I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” 25 The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; 26 it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.
(Lam. 3:21-26 NIV)
Persecution, suffering and days of sadness are temporary. While in the midst of them this may be of little comfort, it is vital that we remember this truth. Even if we suffered every moment of every day for 100 years, when you consider that in light of eternal life without pain, disappointment, and suffering, it does seem "momentary" and "light affliction" as the apostle Paul wrote in 2 Cor. 4:17. Too often we become short-sighted and lose their perspective of this life in comparison with eternity.
If you wait upon the LORD, He will save you, whether it be in this life or the next. Indeed, it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.