Jeremiah 15:The Bible-based devotions that I write each day are called “Daily Reflections.” But, in light of Jeremiah 15:16, I wonder if they should be called “Daily Confections,” as in “something delightful to eat each day.”
The prophet Jeremiah might have approved of this name change. In the fifteenth chapter of the book that bears his name, the Lord spelled out the various ways that his people would suffer because of their sin (15:1-9). Though Jeremiah would suffer with his people, the Lord promised to take care of him (15:11). Nevertheless, the prophet begged the Lord to help him (15:15). In support of his appeal, he professed his love for God’s words: “When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart’s delight” (15:16). For Jeremiah, the words of God revealed to him were rather like confections, something he loved to eat.
I’m not sure “Daily Confections” works in the end, however. Confections are sweets: candies, cookies, and other sugar-saturated treats. We do like to devour them, and we do so with joy and delight. But we shouldn’t eat them every day, and they don’t contribute to our physical health. God’s words, on the other hand, are the essence of spiritual health. They offer exactly what we need to know God and serve him.
The metaphor of eating God’s words reminds us that they are not merely something to study with our minds, but also something to take deep into our souls. Rightly understanding the words of Scripture is a crucial part of this process, to be sure. It continues as we think about, reflect upon, pray through, memorize, embody, and obey God’s truth. The more we “devour” God’s revealed words, the more they will become for us our joy and delight, as they help us to know God intimately and serve him faithfully.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: In what ways do you “devour” God’s words? What helps you to receive his words, not only as something to be understood, but as essential spiritual nutrition, even as a delightful meal? PRAYER: Thank you, gracious God, for revealing yourself to us in words. Thank you for the Scripture, your written Word, which helps us to know you truly and teaches us how to live fruitfully.
O Lord, may your word be something I devour. May it be my joy and delight. Yes, to be sure, there are things in Scripture that are hard to understand. And there are things that are hard to hear. But even these are meant to teach and bless your people.
The real joy of your words, Lord, is not the words themselves, but the fact that they help me to know you personally. And knowing you is the best thing of all!
All praise be to you, O God, because you want us to know you, and speak to us through your Word. Amen.