BEGIN WITH PRAYER
"Lord open my eyes and my heart."
Read slowly so that you take in. And as you do, turn your heart to God, thanking him for the good you discover and praying his will home for you, your family, your church and the world.
Wisdom to chew on
Understanding to grow in
it is very easy for Christians in our culture to despair, to feel things go from bad to worse without hope of change. But with the Lord there is always hope. So the writer of Lamentations (Jeremiah?) details his despair in seeing what the Lord's wrath has brought about, and in being opposed and ridiculed. But he remembers the Lord's great love - his compassion and faithfulness, and so he is able to wait on him, recognizing two very important truths in our own consideration of suffering: First, although the Lord brings affliction, he does not do it willingly. It is an expression of his justice and wisdom, but not his pleasure (3v33). Second, nothing happens except by his decree (3v37). So we should not complain about our lot, but examine ourselves in case it results from personal sin, repent if it does, and recognize that what God has brought on us he can as easily remove (3v37-42). It's all a word for our nation too. As you read note what exactly the writer hopes in.
Finish this reading by pausing to ask yourself:
1) What’s the main thing it teaches me about God or his purposes in Christ? Then praise him for this.
2) What’s the main thing it teaches me about his will for me or the world? Then pray that home.
Devotion to offer up
You could read this aloud and perhaps as a springboard to further prayer.