Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Plans and Hope

These people were far away from home. Taken away from the places they knew. Taken away from their friends and families. Exiles. Strangers. They even had some tears when they thought of home. And they were in this position because of their faith in God. No, I’m not writing about CITC! When the captives from Judah arrived in Babylon, they must have wondered what it was all about. Removed from the Promised Land and the Temple, they thought their days were well and truly numbered. Had God abandoned them?

Yet into this bleak situation, Jeremiah writes a letter to the exiles, telling them to seek the welfare of the city ‘for in its welfare you will find your welfare’ (Jer 29:7). Despite them being in a strange place, they are fulfilling God’s plan. God hadn’t finished with them yet. The letter to the exiles is one of hope, and you probably already know one of its verses: ‘For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope’ (Jer 29:11).

Their time of confusion and discomfort was not without purpose. God was fulfilling his plans through them. This time of year can be a stressful time for the final year students as we seek to discern where God is leading. Yet as we move through the Curacy appointments process, we can be confident of the same faithful God, who still has plans for his people!


This article first appeared as the Senior Student's Column in the Church of Ireland Theological College Community Review, Issue 2 (January 2008).

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