Posted by: Jo | January 2, 2023

New Mercies – New Hope

“And this I call to mind and therefore I have hope

(Lamentations 3:21)

This past year has been fraught with all sorts of disaster, with a pandemic still invading the world, ugly war causing horror for innocent people, natural happenings causing mankind to fear what lies ahead with climate changing, so no wonder hope seems to be evading us, but over the Christmas time our city’s daily paper posted a beautiful cartoon that lifted one’s heart. It depicted two people huddled together in the dark (possibly in Ukraine) and one says to the other we have no light. Our power has been cut off. The other points to the sky where a huge star is shining and says, “We however do have light! Lookup and see the light!”. The reference to the star of Bethlehem lifted my heart.

Scripture has many stories of disasters ugly wars etc. that shattered hope in people, but when they looked up to the Heavenly Father hope sprang up inside them and Jeremiah who wrote the book of Lamentations, realized this, and wrote. 

“It is the Lord’s mercies that are not consumed because his compassions never fail because they are new every morning great is his faithfulness.” (K.J.V.) (Lamentations 3: 22 – 23)

Jeremiah was chosen by God to be a prophet for him in a very turbulent time, as the children of Israel had drifted away from the one true God and were worshipping false gods. Jeremiah at first is frightened to do this and tells God he is too young and doesn’t know how to speak to large crowds, but God assures him he will be with him. It was tough for Jeremiah, he was mocked thrown into prison and attacked on all sides, but what emerged through this time was that Jeremiah realized that hope in the love and faithfulness of God carried him through and we can read these words written so many of thousands of years ago and echo Jeremiah’s words and look for those new mercies in this New Year to come. 

The prophet Isaiah has such lyrical language to assure us and lift us up whatever is happening around us, a passage to read repeatedly. 

“He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary and young men stumble and fall, but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary; they will walk and not grow faint.” (Isaiah 40:  29 – 31)

When we were younger, we had a cabin high in the mountains with water frontage and I loved to watch the Osprey (beautiful eagle) soaring into the sky what wonderful imagery of what it feels like to rid oneself of worry, doubt, despair, and trust in the hope the Heavenly Father offers. 

We must play our part to experience this hope. We have to say yes to God’s beautiful gift and genuinely trust him, not take things into our own hands, and feel we can do it on our own or to be overwhelmed and wallow in self-pity, but to look up to where our help comes from. 


Responses

  1. Your Epiphany message is so hopeful and uplifting Jo – and it is lovely to be able to share the prayer you gave Mary – who knows when? I look forward to receiving your blog in the year ahead. You give us fresh insights into Bible passages. Thank you Jo – and happy New Year to you and your family.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you once again Jo. I think you sent me the following little prayer which I say daily.
    “Healer of our every I’ll,
    Light beyond tomorrow,
    Give us peace beyond our sorrow
    And hope beyond our fears.”

    Liked by 1 person


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