Why do you constantly go about
changing your political allegiances?
You will get no help from Egypt
just as you got no help from Assyria.
Moreover, you will come away from Egypt
with your hands covering your faces in sorrow and shame
because the Lord will not allow your reliance on them to be successful
and you will not gain any help from them.
Before I was really following Jesus, and seeking his plan for my life, I had a lot of career ideas
The very first thing I wanted to be was probably a cowboy because of all the classic old westerns my dad had us watch
I then went through a race car driver phase like many young boys do
Professional hockey, baseball, soccer, or snowboarder were all on the agenda at some point too
As I became older, and slightly more altruistic (only slightly), I began to think more outside myself, kicking around the idea of being a teacher, or owning a snowboard shop.
Unfortunately, or so I thought a the time, none of these things ever worked out. It turned out that even though I was decent at everything I tried, I was never really good enough to make a career out of it. Or there were parts of it that I knew just didn’t line up with how I was wired. The issue was, I had spent tons of time searching out ways of making a living and career, and found dead ends every time. It’s a bit frustrating! I’m sure I’m not the only one who has felt that way before, like ‘why does everything I try keep missing the mark??’
Eventually when my life radically changed, and I began pursuing ministry, I found something that clicked.
Sometimes there’s a reason for all those closed doors. Not always, sometimes I was just really bad at stuff! But sometimes it’s God’s abounding grace and love for us that shuts certain things down, because he’s calling us back to him. Just like Jeremiah is talking about.
It reminds me of Jonah too.
Someone much smarter than me once said, “Storms and fish aren’t always the thing we need to be saved from, sometimes storms and fish, are saving us from something worse.” The implication being that God sent the fish to save Jonah (and all the Ninevites!) from getting off the right track.
But just like the Israelites being warned in the opening of Jeremiah, we keep going astray time and time again looking for satisfaction in other things, other gods that offer us something that we want.
Yet again God’s overwhelming grace for us shines through in the verse just before this when he says “But, watch out! I will bring down judgment on you because you say, ‘I have not committed any sin.’” (Jer. 2:35b)
What struck me here as a foreshadow to Jesus’ work on the cross is that God’s judgment is ultimately because our failure to repent of the sin, not necessarily that we did the sin. He knows we’ll go astray time and time again, and he almost always withholds judgment if we repent and seek him again. When we are bold enough to believe we haven’t sinned, that’s when we should fear.