TODAY’S SCRIPTURE Lamentations 3:1-24

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies never come to an end.”

These are not only words from Scripture, but they are also lines from one of my favorite worship songs. I sang and even led this song for years, enjoying the upbeat reminder of God’s love for us. It was a long time before I read the verses immediately before those lines, and when I did, my perspective was forever changed.

Reading the first twenty verses of this chapter puts Jeremiah’s pain on full display, as he describes what God has done. He has made Jeremiah’s flesh and bones waste away, He has enveloped him in darkness, and He has walled him in so that Jeremiah cannot escape. Jeremiah graphically depicts his kidney being pierced by God’s arrows, and his teeth being shoved into gravel by the Creator. Jeremiah does not pull any punches when conveying his pain, and he does not hesitate to lay the blame at the feet of God.

In verse 21, Jeremiah reveals that he can have hope in the midst of such difficulties, and that is when we read these famous lines. God’s steadfast love and mercy remain, even in our darkest hours.

This is why Job could suffer the loss of all his cattle, all his children, and even his health and still say, “Though He slay me, I will hope in Him” (Job 13:15). Job continues to ask God hard questions, but he also continues to view God as his hope.

This is why David could experience the betrayal of his son, the transition from reigning king to fleeing outcast, and an uncertain future, and still trust in God. He instructs the Levites to leave the Ark of the Covenant in Jerusalem. This Ark is the symbol of God’s presence among His people, and David simply says, “If I find favor in the eyes of the Lord, He will bring me back and let me see both it and His dwelling place. But if He says, ‘I have no pleasure in you,’ behold, here I am, let Him do to me what seems good to Him” (2 Samuel 15:25-26).

What do we do in the midst of pain? How do we maintain hope in the face of suffering? We can remember this: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. His mercies never come to an end. They are new every morning.

Today, I will…remember that God’s mercies are new every morning. I will write that down on a piece of paper and place it somewhere I can see it every morning, as a daily reminder of God’s love for us.