Today's Readings - Jeremiah 47-48, 1 Thessalonians 1, Psalm 119:25–32, Proverbs 25:25–28
"I'm lower than a snake's belly."
Ever felt that way? You are down, discouraged, perhaps even depressed - not the medical kind, the kind but the kind that comes as a result of overwhelming life circumstances. One thing after another has piled up on you until you have been ground into the dust. It is just as the Psalmist described in Psalm 119:25.
My life is down in the dust.That about sums it up, doesn't it? Dry. Lifeless. Everything feels as if it about to blow away. Life has turned to dust.
He changes to a different metaphor to say something similar in verse 28.
I am weary from grief.The heat, the pressure, the sadness of life has worn down the man's soul, it is melting away to nothing. These two metaphors have two things in common. First, they describe a life in pain, in sorrow, in distress. A man lying face down in the dust. A man whose soul is melting away.
Be honest - have you ever felt that way? Life 1. You 0? You've been chewed up and spit out by the world. Maybe it was a horrible tragedy, or relentless hardship, or the betrayal of a friend, or maybe it was death by a thousand paper cuts - a series of little stresses that pile upon one another until you just can't take it anymore.
There is something else these two metaphors share - a solution. In verse 25, what ought one do when his soul clings to the dust? Seek "life according to your word." Verse 28 gives the solution to the person whose soul is melting away.
Strengthen me through your word.Reading and studying the word of God is not a religious duty we perform to please God or earn brownie points with him. We seek the word because in it we meet God, learn of Christ, and find our souls strengthened by immersing ourselves in God's word. It's not a religious exercise; its how your soul renews and rebuilds!
God's Spirit uses the word to work within our spirits to rebuild, renew, strengthen, and reinvigorate us.
Thank you, Father, for your life-giving word, which the Spirit uses to renew and strengthen me when I am low, when my spirit is dry or sorrowful
Think and Pray
When you are discouraged, do you seek strength in God and in his word?
Where do you go for encouragement and help?