Lamentations chapter three describes how despair engulfs us, and how we can conquer it. Jeremiah’s downward spiral starts in verse one: ‘I am the man who has seen affliction…’ (v 1 NAS), and morphs into an unhealthy preoccupation with his troubles.
The fact is, when our circumstances deteriorate, our self-talk sounds a lot like Jeremiah’s. He blamed God for his physical symptoms, his emotional anguish, and his sense of entrapment. He rehearsed God’s failure to answer his prayers, and his fear that he’d been singled out as an object of public ridicule: all classic elements of depression. No wonder he felt powerless and hopeless! (v 18). That kind of self-talk initiates and intensifies despair and depression and feeds our negative outlook.
The turning point came when Jeremiah changed his self-talk: ‘This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope.’ He changed his thought process by recalling God’s goodness and mercy: ‘Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed…His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness’ (vv 22-23 NIV).
When you change your mind—you change your mood! It doesn’t happen automatically; you have to deliberately refocus your thinking at the very time when you feel least like doing it. Notice: Jeremiah’s circumstances didn’t improve—his outlook did. A stream of encouraging thoughts triggered a change in his self-talk—and his depression lifted: ‘“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I have hope in Him”’ (v 24 NAS). That’s how important your self-talk is!
‘This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope.’ Lamentations 3:21 NAS
ENCOURAGEMENT 4 TODAY
1 Peter 1:3-8, 18-19, 23; 2:2-3, 7, 24-25; 5:6-7
God wants you to know His amazing love for you! He has so much to say to you! So be encouraged today! He is precious! Look to Him!
He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, & unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith. though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith, may be found to result in praise & glory & honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen Him, you love Him! You were ransomed with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot! You have been born again, through the living & abiding word of God! Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation, if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good! To you who believe, Christ is precious! He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin & live to righteousness. By His wounds you have been healed. For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the shepherd & overseer of your souls! Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because he cares for you!
Is Christ precious to you! Oh look to Him today & you will be saved! Cast all you care on Him for he cares for you! Seek Him today! Never delay!