V 11. For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.
These verses are often quoted to encourage people going through hard times – but without realising that the hard times are coming anyway!
Jerusalem would be destroyed, the precious temple would be flattened, many people would die at the hands of the Babylonians, others would be carried away for slave labour, and those who were left would have to live in abject poverty in a ruined land. Yet still Jeremiah can declare God’s purpose is not for disaster, but to give them a good future and a long-term hope!
What God is saying to the people through Jeremiah is, ‘Look beyond the hard times and see that I have a plan for your good in the years ahead. Then, TRUST ME.
That is just about the hardest thing to do when the sky is falling in and there is no shred of evidence for anything good in the years ahead.
Maybe you have been to that point, or are there right now. How can you trust God when everything seems to be going wrong?
In spite of all the evidence to the contrary, God has a good purpose for you because He loves you, and His grace is good enough for whatever you might have to face.
The whole book of Jeremiah is testimony to the grace of God and the supremacy of His purposes, even when life is at its toughest.