“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for” (Jeremiah 29:11)
Lots of people quote the above as their favorite verse. Lots of people go even further and call it their life verse, me being one of them. It’s nice to know that God’s got your future in His hands.
But when you look at the context, this is written to people in captivity who are longing for home. The funny part is that they are longing for a home they’ve never seen, but only heard stories about.
Many of us feel like captives. Maybe you feel trapped in a job you don’t like, but you’re afraid to step out in a bad economy and look for new work, so you stay and stress and count the minutes to the end of every day.
Maybe you feel like your family doesn’t know or appreciate you. Maybe you feel like your spouse is always tearing you down and never offering anything positive. Maybe you’ve being going to a church for a while and you still feel like a stranger and an outsider.
Maybe you feel like your friends have all moved on and left you behind in your pain. Maybe you had your romantic hopes dashed yet again and feel even less desirable than ever.
Read the first part of the verse. God knows. He’s aware of your distress. He sees the tears you cry in the dark when you’re alone and feels the pain that hides behind the facade of a smile.
He has a plan for you. He has a dream for you that is bigger than you but that you get to be a part of. He has a future for you that is as wide-open and free as His amazing grace.
I love how one author said that when you are in a dark place, listen very carefully because God has a special and very precious word for you that you won’t be able to receive any other way.
Jesus knows what it feels like to be alone and forsaken. That’s why He said He would never to either to you. Ever.
Keep trusting and keep believing, even when you don’t feel like it. Keep clinging to Jesus. If all you can pray is “Help me,” keep praying that over and over until it becomes your mantra.
I have never known a storm that didn’t leave a rainbow or a night that didn’t turn into day. Your time is coming and God’s got good things coming your way. Hold on.