Even if you don’t pick up your bible often, you probably would recognize this verse. Although it is extremely popular, it is still one of my favorites. I’m not sure if I have mentioned it here or not, but I struggle with anxiety. After I had my first born son, my anxiety became even worse and the thoughts in my head spiraled into an unmanageable chaos of constant fear. Along with medication, I remember this verse helped me to remember God has an ultimate goal in mind to prosper me and not harm me.
Recently, I came across another blog. The writer posted a very interesting article about misusing common popular bible verses and Jeremiah 29:11 was listed. He went on to say that this verse is talking about when the Isrealites were in exile. He also pointed out that attention should be payed to the verses leading up to Jeremiah 29:11 and also those after. I fully agree that it is important to know the context from where the verses we hold on to come from. That is one of the reasons I started writing this blog, so that I can have some accountability and delve deeper into my bible studies.
However, I want to offer this personal view as well…Here goes: I believe that the bible is the living word of God. I believe and have witnessed it to mean different things to me at different parts of my life. The truths that it reveals to me are personal and pertain to the events going on within my life at that time. The same holds true for others. Someone else can be praying and Jeremiah 29:11 comes to mind, and that verse can mean something completely different to them than what it does to me. In my opinion, that is what it means when scripture says that the bible is alive.
Hebrews 4:12-“For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
So yes, I think using Jeremiah 29:11 as a motivational poster slogan might not be exactly what Jeremiah had intended as he said those words all those years ago, but is it wrong? I don’t think so. Any time you get the living word of God out there (into the world), it is a good thing. If you have a reason for someone to look at a verse and memorize it repeatedly, even better. Because it isn’t about us, in the end the Lord will breathe life into the words exactly as He wants them interpreted.
We still have to do our parts. We need to be in the word, we need to be around those that we can look up to spiritually, we need to have and nurture our relationship with Christ through prayer. If we are doing these things the Lord does speak to us through His holy text.
My prayer as we go forward into the new year is that the Living God will share His words with you. I pray that He will apply them into your lives and continue to apply them to mine when and how He chooses. I pray you are filled with hope for the future and not dispair. Rely on Jesus this year, He will guide you and keep you. In His name I pray…Amen.
For the little ones this week:
“God’s word is alive.” -Hebrews 4:12