• UPG

Out of Captivity

Updated: Aug 4

by Vicar Jamie

“For surely I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.  Then when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you.  When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:11-13 Jeremiah spoke these words to the Israelites who were living in exile in Babylon, having been forced to leave their homeland by an enemy empire. Jeremiah has told the people that they should prepare for the long haul – that they will live in exile for 70 years. They should therefore build homes for themselves, get married, even pray for peace for the city they must now call home. They should get on with living their lives to the best of their ability in this strange land. Just like the Israelites, we too are strangers living in a strange land in many and varied ways. Living with the coronavirus has turned our lives upside down. We are having to find new ways to do just about everything – grocery shop, go to work, go to school, visit with family and friends, go to church, mourn the loss of loved ones, get married, have babies, seek medical attention, and on and on. We have to adapt to wearing masks whenever we go out in public. There are times when I wish for nothing more than to be teleported to the future – a future that does not include CoVid-19, or at least one that has an effective vaccine against it. Similarly, the Israelites certainly wished to be in a time when they could return home to Jerusalem. We want to be rescued from our “state of captivity.” We surely will be; however, not in our time, but rather in God’s time. While we wait, we need to get on with living as best we can. We can rest assured that just as God promised the Israelites, God promises us that God has a plan for our lives. God will bring us out of captivity. In the meantime, we can trust that God will work through us during this time, bringing about prosperity and hope, for we do not travel this road alone. “...when you call upon me and come and pray to me, I will hear you. When you search for me, you will find me; if you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:12-13). Grace + peace, Vicar Jamie

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