The Book of Lamentations, as the title suggests, is a collection of laments---over the destruction of Jerusalem at the hand of the Babylonian Empire in 586 B.C. The book is traditionally credited to the prophet Jeremiah, but even if tradition is wrong, the author was clearly a faithful follower of God who was carried away with God’s people when Babylon defeated and carted them off as captives.
“He has driven me away and made me walk in darkness rather than light. (Lamentations 3:2)
Sometimes bad things happen to good people—for God’s purpose. (Rom 8:28)
Israel had turned its back on God and their rebellion resulted in their defeat and exile, but God did not let His People go into exile without a witness. He did not send them into darkness without lights. Ezekiel, Daniel, and Shadrach Meshach and Abednego were there—standing strong for God! And no doubt there were many others who loved God there too—shining brightly for Him in the midst of Israel’s time of darkness.
When I finally hit bottom I looked for the light. I needed something to give me hope and show me the way out of the mess I had turned my life into. My Grandma Rachel was right there—shining.
Grandma had experienced a lot of grief and many hardships in her life—and I’m sure there were moments in her senior years when she must have wondered, “Lord, why am I still here in this dark old world?” But on the day I walked into here apartment--broken in spirit; primed and ready to surrender to Jesus, I’m sure all of those questions were replaced with fresh joy and purpose as she led me right into the arms of our Savior.
God needs bright people in dark places. God needs His lights where you work, His witness in your neighborhood. If you love Christ and are following Him—and still find yourself in dark and difficult places, never assume that God is being unfair.
He just promoted you!
He has called you to be an Ezekiel to others around you; to testify for Him in a place where no one else seems to know Him. He has raised you up to pray openly to Him like Daniel. (Dan. 6) And to shine as a bright resolute light for Him like Shadrach Meshach and Abednego! (Dan. 3) In those times don’t weep--praise and pray and walk every day on your knees in humble surrender--remembering that when you are weak and surrendered---you are at your strongest, shining your brightest!
“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” (2 Cor. 12:9)
"But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." (Acts. 1:8)
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Rom. 8:28)
God purpose for every Christ follower is that we might know Him as Savior and grow more like Him as Lord. (Rom. 8:29) And if—as part of that purposeful-process—God allows your life to travel down some dark paths—don’t become bitter—accept the promotion with grateful humility and determinted faith!
People living in dark places need people of light! Shine for Jesus today!
Thanks for reading! Remember to like, share or comment. Have a great day in Jesus!