Posted by: Jim E | September 6, 2010

Weeping…Yet I Remember And Hope…

All around us there is enough trouble that we don’t need to come up with our own…the news is enough to stop a strong person in their tracks…people out of work, or lost their home, or someone is sick with this or that…it is the human condition, I guess…and maybe we have a little more of it than is usual…but all of us know trouble, it will come as night follows day…and as my Mom used to say, “Katy, bar the door.”…or as I misheard it, “Katy, by the door.”…both say the same I guess…”Trouble is in store.”…guard the door…it’s just outside…

Okay, so it is the human condition to have trouble…in fact we can’t go even a few days or weeks without something going “haywire”…the stove gives out, the car has a problem, someone gets sick, a window gets broken…and those are just the annoying ones…many of us have had much more serious troubles to deal with…there is disease and death…and so much more that we see around us…but the human condition also holds out for hope…hope for a better life, hope for recovery, hope for a job, hope for money to fix the car…hope…hope…hope…it is also part of the human condition…

In church on Sunday…I don’t know where it was said or how it was incorporated into the sermon…but the words to the hymn, “Great Is Thy Faithfulness” was mentioned…not all the song, and we didn’t sing the song…but it was mentioned…I recalled where it came from…Lamentations 3:22-23…in my past life I memorized those verses…because I loved the song, I guess…I memorized them in the King James Version: “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.”

Though those verses are the crux of the song…(and I will add a video with the words later)…yet, verse 21 gives the following two verses something to lift the human condition even more…verse 21 “This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope.”

What does all this mean???…well, Jeremiah wrote both the book of Jeremiah and also Lamentations…both books are filled  with Jeremiah “the weeping prophet”, lamenting over his people…how they had left their God for things of this world…Jeremiah preached until after the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of Solomon’s temple and the Babylonian captivity…he didn’t want to preach during this time of tremendous trouble…but he did…

And in Lamentations he was lamenting about all the trouble Judah had suffered…and the verses before the verse on hope, he was going over all the trouble…and then he says in so many words: I remember all this trouble and it takes me down as I remember it…then as he relates all the trouble…he also remembers the hope that is in the Lord (His mercies, compassion)…he says: “But this I recall, to my mind, therefore I have hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.”

In Israel today stands the West Wall…it is called “the wailing wall”…at the temple mount…”a place of weeping”…a place of lamentations…many go there to pray…Jeremiah knew that place…and all of us know a place of weeping…of lamentation…of trouble…

I love the song…written by Thomas Chisholm and music by William Runyan…both written in 1923 and are in many hymn books…it tells of God’s faithfulness and offers hope to all who have trouble…that’s all of us…trouble in our life today…or will it be tomorrow…whatever it is…when it comes and we know it will…we will know all about the “trouble”…it’s if we remember as Jeremiah did…he remembered verses 22-23…and when he recalled that to his  mind…he said, “therefore have I hope.”


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Responses

  1. These are great thoughts Uncle Jim. Today I am lecturing on the Great Depression and one question I must ask is, how does the Progessive movement’s migration away from God and toward science impact the hope of Americans during a time of depression? If man is always relying on man and science to solve problems, then I’d say there is little hope. However, if man looks to God (great is his faithfulness), then there is abundant hope. That’s what our nation needs today. There is too much hope in the government to make things better. Perhaps we need to be on our knees more looking to our creator for the change we truly need.

    And here is another famous mother quote, “stay out of trouble, you hear”! Like that ever happens to any child between the ages of 5 and 95.


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