"The word of the Lord came to Jeremiah." Tucked in these words is a wondrous surprise. Surely it is surprising when God's Word comes to seek us out, especially when we may not be looking for it. When that word comes, it has a way of finding us with a power to create us anew and set us on our path for a new day. "I know you ... I consecrated you ... I appointed you." It is much as to say we belong; we are loved; we are given purpose by a God who surrounds us, sustains us, and gives us tasks that have meaning in God's grand design and providence.
"I know you." Such a word comes as comforting and encouraging when we seem alone or fumbling for direction. But there is also a toughness in this word. There is no escape, no apology that will deter its focus: "I am with you" for a purpose. Some days, it is good just to be reminded, so as to set our feet once again on a steady path.
O God, your word comes to remind us that, in your grand design, we are known and loved and given purpose. Let your call summon us again this day to live in trust and confidence in the power of that life-giving word. Amen.
Jeremiah 1:4-10 (NRSV)
4 Now the word of the Lord came to me saying,
5 "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations."
6 Then I said, "Ah, Lord God! Truly I do not know how to speak, for I am only a boy."
7 But the Lord said to me, "Do not say, 'I am only a boy'; for you shall go to all to whom I send you, and you shall speak whatever I command you,
8 "Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord."
9 Then the Lord put out his hand and touched my mouth; and the Lord said to me, "Now I have put my words in your mouth.
10 See, today I appoint you over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to pull down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant."