In the face of opposition and physical conflicts, Jeremiah focused on the Lord and received comfort and encouragement from knowing that God was with him. In the next verses (Jeremiah 20:14-18) Jeremiah is in complete despair over the fact that he was even born. Some Bible commentators feel that this section of Scripture may not have been immediately after verse 13, but still, what a mood swing! Showing confidence and praising God in verses 11-13 and then into the depths of melancholy. Sometimes our emotions may swing as violently as Jeremiah’s did. This example of Jeremiah in the scripture was not to give permission for such thought, but to show the reality of life’s challenges. Here are some thoughts to ponder:
– Note that God did not answer Jeremiah – perhaps because Jeremiah already knew the answer and source of encouragement and that no further revelation was necessary. Perhaps sometimes when we think God is silent it is because He has already said what was needed to comfort and raise us up (see verses 11-13), we just need to walk in it. Sometimes this silence from God is necessary so that we conquer, from within, the pressures that are upon us from the outside; instead of expecting God to change the external situations.
– We need to rest in the fact that if our life were more of a curse then a blessing; then the all knowing, loving, merciful and righteous God would not have given it. In such a context, if it were better that a person had not been born, he would not have been born.
– It is true that life has emotional, physical, relational, financial and other forms of distress and struggle. Life is not always easy here on earth but then we are not destined to live or to make life on earth the ultimate end. At times the greatest reward is not from what has taken place here on earth but from walking uprightly and hearing the voice of our Lord saying, “well done, you have been faithful in little, enter into the joy of the Lord.”