I was just conversing with Diane H. re: the post, “This God–His Way is Perfect.” (See comments on that post.) This morning the Scripture reading for the Office of Readings was Jeremiah 20:7-18, a long passage which I will not quote in its entirety here. It starts with:
You duped me, O Lord, and I let myself be duped;
you were too strong for me, and you triumphed.
All the day long I am an object of laughter;
everyone mocks me. . . .
The word of the Lord has brought me
derision and reproach all the day.
An honest statement if ever I’ve heard one. Jeremiah, of all the prophets, lived a life of great foreshadowing of the Suffering Savior. Not just his words, but his very life was an icon of Christ in His suffering. And, as we read here, he was obviously very honest with God.
Then, in this passage, he continues to speak with honesty:
But the Lord is with me, like a mighty champion:
my persecutors will stumble, they will not triumph . . .
Sing to the Lord,
praise the Lord,
For he has rescued the life of the poor
from the power of the wicked!
Jeremiah was able to rise above his experience at the moment to proclaim what is true–and honest–despite his circumstances. A few verses later, we find him again crying out to the Lord, telling it like it is:
Cursed be the day
on which I was born! . . .
Why did I come forth from the womb,
to see sorrow and pain,
to end my days in shame?
I couldn’t help thinking of Jesus’ own struggle in the Garden and His honesty with His Father at that time. If you can’t be honest with God, how can you truly be honest with yourself? Jeremiah was working through his circumstances, looking for God’s perspective, and that requires complete honesty. It takes a lot of trust to be completely honest with God.