While reading through the oft-neglected book of Lamentations, one stumbles across a notion worthy of some attention. Lamentations 1:9—addressing God’s judgment of the idol-stricken city of Jerusalem—says it this way: “she took no thought of her future; therefore her fall is terrible.”
Indeed, it is so. The citizens of Jerusalem daily repudiated God’s merciful calls to repentance. They insisted upon going there own way, doing their own thing, and disregarding any exhortation to pursue a better path. After many seasons of incessant patience, the Eternal God sent a fearsome horde against Jerusalem—a vast army who dismantled the city brick by brick. In fact, the book of Lamentations was written as a dirge regarding this destruction. Among the laments is the indictment that Jerusalem took no thought of her future. In living blindly for the moment, the people brought about their own destruction.
Which, of course, begs the question: do you take thought of your future? This question is worth some serious consideration.
To answer it adequately you might ask yourself some other probing queries. First, what do you want said of you the day you die? For me, being a selfish prude who insisted upon being the captain of my own destiny is not what I want to hear (of course, no one would publicly say it, but….). What about you?
Secondly, what kind of choices can you make today to live and finish well? Managing time better, having a “yes” kind of face, choosing now rather than later to cultivate a certain relationship, praying for a more profound personal love for God and neighbor—these are just some of the commitments you and I can make today. Add to that the mostly neglected notion of denying one’s self those things that hinder maturity and undermine unconditional love. A word of caution is in order here—the best choices are often very difficult to embrace.
Thirdly, in what ways are you feeding your soul? Precious moments each day in the Scriptures go far toward building the noble soul. Time with a friend is a must for maturity. Quiet moments in front of a fire are good for the heart and mind. Please absorb this important thought: the best way to ensure a future delightful to both the Lord and to you is to cultivate today a relationship of trust, rest and obedience. A well-fed soul enables right choices and makes for a God-honoring future. Nothing less is acceptable.
After all, too much is at stake to risk a terrible fall.
Thank you! It sure did.
Hi Justin . . . great question! Yes . . . Nehemiah lived approximately 150 years following Lamentations, which was written by the prophet Jeremiah right after the fall of Jerusalem. What Jeremiah saw destroyed, Nehemiah saw rebuilt. Both men really bookended a sad season of exile, disarray and humiliation for the people of Israel. On the other hand, the years of exile, largely in Babylon and Persia, were also a season of purification for the nation.
Hope that helps!!!
Excellent questions to ponder in one’s own life. I’ve got a quick question, did Nehemiah live after Lamentations was written?
Hey Pastor Matthew,
Thanks for the tough questions, always good to ask yourself things like these and it’s amazing how often I neglect to. You also met with my wife a few weeks back, thanks for your time. She was very encouraged.