“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, LORD God Almighty.” (Jeremiah 15:16)

An absolutely beautiful verse from Jeremiah, and given the context, somewhat amazing.  Jeremiah is in the midst of what can only be described as an awful prophecy.  The idolatry of the people–specifically King Manasseh, son of Hezekiah–is so bad that God tells Jeremiah that even if Moses and Samuel interceded on behalf of the people he would not listen to them!

Jeremiah is tasked with passing this message on to the people who will undergo God’s judgment.  This will probably not go well.  Predictably it does not.

Look again at Jeremiah’s comment: When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight. Jeremiah is doing God’s work, he is being God’s messenger to the people.  In spite of the fact that his message was one of severe judgment and punishment, God’s words were still a delight to Jeremiah.  This is not because he was masochistically happy about the coming judgment–after all, he was among the people and so experienced the deprivations caused by Babylon–it is because he was a good and faithful prophet of God.

Our call is to be little Jeremiahs.  This does not mean that we gladly proclaim prophecies–we do not have his office–it means that we have the faithfulness of Jeremiah in our sphere of life, that we love God’s word, that we accept God’s word as it is spoken, that we submit ourselves to it gladly and willingly, and that it become our joy and our heart’s delight.

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