Read: Lamentations 5:15-22
But you, O LORD, reign forever. (v. 19)
At the conclusion of Charles Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities, Sydney Carton is about to be executed for a crime he didn’t commit. He’ll die in another man’s place, yet goes to the guillotine with serenity. Why? He imagines the other man living a long, happy life. And he envisions a peaceful future for his loved ones.
The book of Lamentations ends virtually the way it began. Jeremiah describes the plight of defeated Jerusalem and its devastated inhabitants. God’s people were scattered. God seemed silent. Jeremiah would die in exile. And yet Jeremiah concludes his lament with a note of serenity. God reigns forever, and his throne endures (v. 19). No matter what happens, God’s sovereignty is unassailable. His purposes will prevail.
The reason for all the bad that happens in our lives and in our world is unclear; plus, we’ll eventually lose every earthly acquisition and achievement in this life. We’ll struggle and suffer, and it may even seem as though sorrow will triumph in the end. But no amount of suffering or sin can compare with the sovereignty of God. The God who overcame sin and death and hell at the cross is able to weave our exiles and wilderness times into his saving purposes. When it feels like your “dancing has been turned to mourning” (v. 15) and your “eyes have grown dim” (v. 17), remember: God is still God. God is still good. And God still has his best in store for those who love him.
As you pray, thank God for being good to you.