The lesson of loss
By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept when we remembered Zion. Psalms 137:1 (NKJV)
This Psalm has to be one of the saddest sections in the entire Bible. It describes the way the Israelites wept and lamented after they were torn from their homeland and were carried off into captivity by the Babylonians. Their hearts were shattered as they let go of the land that their God had given them. It was all misery, mourning, pain, and poverty.
But here's what's interesting: For literally hundreds of years the Lord had warned His people about the reality of this happening. As Israel spiraled deeper and deeper into the sin of idolatry, God sent one prophet after another to proclaim the judgment that would fall if they didn't repent. For the most part, they didn't listen. They went right on living as they had, until the gavel of judgment finally fell.
Now they were in mourning. If only they had taken God seriously back when He first warned them.
It's been said that you don't appreciate something until it's gone, and sadly, that's often the case. Israel is a prime example of this. They didn't appreciate the privilege of living safely in their own land until it was forcibly taken from them. God warned them, but it took the lesson of loss to actually affect their hearts.
Do we need to learn the same lesson? What has the Lord warned us about? Are we tuning Him out and living life according to our own desires? Do we need to lose something so the Lord can get our full attention? May we be softhearted enough to hear the Spirit's answer to each of these questions.
Sovereign Lord, we don't want to need to learn the lesson of loss that Israel did. Show us where and how we might be headed in that direction and give us the grace to change course.
Think About It…
What does this passage reveal to me about God?
What does this passage reveal to me about myself?
Based on this, what changes do I need to make?
What is my prayer for today?
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