Devotions on Emotions (and Scripture) by the First Pres. Pastors
A reflection on Jeremiah 8:18-22
18 My joy is gone, grief is upon me, my heart is sick.
19 Hark, the cry of my poor people from far and wide in the land:
“Is the Lord not in Zion? Is her King not in her?”
(“Why have they provoked me to anger with their images,
with their foreign idols?”)
20 “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.”
21 For the hurt of my poor people I am hurt,
I mourn, and dismay has taken hold of me.
22 Is there no balm in Gilead?
Is there no physician there?
Why then has the health of my poor people not been restored?
The story of God’s people Israel is dotted with times of exile. The people had been disobedient, turning their backs on God, and God had left them on their own. But not completely. As they cried out to God, God responded with healing and deliverance.
When God’s people hurt, in whatever time, God is willing and able to intervene. An old song of the Christian faith responds to the prophet’s agonizing cry in Jeremiah 8:22 in this way:
There is a balm in Gilead, to make the wounded whole.
There is a balm in Gilead, to heal the sin-sick soul
Sometimes I feel discouraged, and think my work’s in vain
But then the Holy Spirit, revives my soul again.
Are your hurting, physically, emotionally, or spiritually?
There is a balm and God offers healing. Pray, wait, trust, and let the Holy Spirit revive your soul again.
God, only you know how I hurt today, and only you can heal my hurt. Help me today to sense your presence in my sin-sick soul and calm me with the balm you deliver. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.