Prayer: O God, let us profit from the wisdom in your Word, in Christ. Amen.
When you can’t keep it in
9 If I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” then within me there is something like a burning fire shut up in my bones;
It was in the movie “Working Girl” where I remember the expression; “you have a real fire in your belly.” It is about a person being very passionate about what they believe. It drives all of their plans and actions. In today’s text, Jeremiah simply cannot stifle the prophecies that God has put in him, no matter how hard he tries to keep them to himself. “Something like a burning fire shut up in my bones.” So God’s words he cannot stop repeating even when he knows people plan to kill him.
Our devotion writer declares; “It burned within him and needed to be spoken. At our baptisms, we heard these or similar words: “let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven” (Matthew 5:16).” So, what burns in your belly? What light shines? What fire burns within you? In what ways does God’s love drive your passions? What is your level of commitment? How do you shine your light to let people see God’s glory?
Prayer: “Gracious God, the light of your love burns within me. Help me share it with others, through Christ. Amen.”
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
Jeremiah Denounces His Persecutors
7 O Lord, you have enticed me, and I was enticed; you have overpowered me, and you have prevailed. I have become a laughingstock all day long; everyone mocks me. 8 For whenever I speak, I must cry out, I must shout, “Violence and destruction!” For the word of the Lord has become for me a reproach and derision all day long. 9 If I say, “I will not mention him, or speak any more in his name,” then within me there is something like a burning fire shut up in my bones; I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot. 10 For I hear many whispering: “Terror is all around! Denounce him! Let us denounce him!” All my close friends are watching for me to stumble. “Perhaps he can be enticed, and we can prevail against him, and take our revenge on him.” 11 But the Lord is with me like a dread warrior; therefore my persecutors will stumble, and they will not prevail. They will be greatly shamed, for they will not succeed. Their eternal dishonor will never be forgotten. 12 O Lord of hosts, you test the righteous, you see the heart and the mind; let me see your retribution upon them, for to you I have committed my cause.
13 Sing to the Lord; praise the Lord! For he has delivered the life of the needy from the hands of evildoers.