Daily Devotional: Lamentations 3:19-23

Daily Devotional: Lamentations 3:19-23

Written by Pastor Phil Stout, Lead Pastor, JAXNAZ Church

Read: Lamentations 3:19-23

International Version (NIV)

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.
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.

Consider: We turn from yesterday’s psalm of praise to haunting words of lament. If you read the first portion of the third chapter of Lamentations you are taken to a point of despair in the writer’s life. The load has become so massive, so crushing that if feels as though God himself is the One who is trying to destroy Jeremiah’s life.

We don’t often hear lamentation like that. Those aren’t the passages typically read in church or in our private prayer time. Yet, expressions of lament occur throughout the Bible, particularly the Old Testament.

These words of anguish culminate in a resignation that God has abandoned him…

“I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is. So I say, ‘My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.’ I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall. I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.” (3:17-20)

But in our anguish we are not alone. We are not abandoned. Those dreadful words are followed by a hope-filled “Yet…”

“Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (3:21-23)

Yesterday we looked at the “new song” we can sing. We saw in Psalm 96—that great psalm of praise—that we could see God’s glory in places we had not previously searched. But it is important to recognize that the valley of lament teaches us the same thing that the mountains of glory teach—“his compassions…are new every morning.”

So no matter what you are going through, today is the day to sing a new song of praise for the new thing God is doing in your life. It was brand new this morning.

Pray: “Lord, I thank you that today, because of your great love, I am ‘not consumed.’ I praise you that your ‘compassions never fail—they are new every morning.’ Thank you for your great faithfulness. Even when I find myself at points of despair, I will choose to believe that you are with me.”

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