Wednesday’s Wisdom from the Word: Seventy years

“…For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

Have you heard this verse before?  Have you clung to it when you aren’t sure what the heck is going on in your life?  Do you believe it?

Right now, Jeff and I are kinda at a crossroads in life.  The church that Jeff was leading worship at for 10 years has decided that its season was finished and closed its doors.   The MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) group that I have been pouring into as it’s Prayer and Care Coordinator and now as the Coordinator of the whole group is kicking me out in May.  (OK, not really kicking me out, but unless I have another child, I graduate from the group as I am no longer a mother of a preschooler.)

We wonder how God is asking us to serve him next.  We wonder if we should be moving into full-time ministry.  If not, we wonder what I am going to do job wise when my youngest heads off to school all day next year.  We wonder how much longer our family of five will fit in our 1000 sq. foot house with one bathroom.  I wonder what I’m going to make for dinner tomorrow… We have a lot of questions about our future.

And right now, those questions aren’t being answered.  I keep praying, but I’m not hearing anything other than, “Wait.” and “Rest in me.”  (Oh, and tomorrow night have chicken and broccoli for dinner.)  Apparently it’s not time for me to know about our future yet.  I have ideas of what’s next… but not confirmation.  I have my opinions of what I’d like to come next… but I’m not sure that Hawaii really needs a new pastor and/or worship leader?  (I just watched Soul Surfer, awesome movie, and the scene where they were in church on the beach – wow, I’d love that!)

Anyway, the verse from Jeremiah is one that’s often used for encouragement… and it is encouraging.  It tells about a time when the Israelites were taken away from their promised land of Jerusalem and into exile in Babylon.  God is telling the Israelites through the prophet Jeremiah not to worry… He’s not abandoning them, He’s not forgetting about them and the promise He made to them.  But here’s the thing about Jeremiah 29:11, it follows Jeremiah 29:10, “This is what the LORD says: ‘When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place.'”

Seventy years!!!!  The Israelites had to be in exile, in bondage for 70 years before God was going to rescue them.  In our immediate gratification society, we have no interest in waiting seventy minutes, let alone seventy days, let alone seventy months, let alone SEVENTY YEARS!  So although I understand that currently God is asking me to wait and rest in Him through prayer, worship, reading the Bible, and church, I am hoping that He is on a shorter time line to reveal what His plans for me are than He was with the Israelites!

♥Becki, imperfect and impatient daughter of God


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