I keep a record of the Bible verses I’ve read each week since beginning this podcast back in January 2020. Sometimes I’ll think of a verse that is so familiar to me that I’m certain I’ve already featured it on this podcast, but I’ll look it up to be certain. I did that today, and much to my surprise, I discovered I have not shared the verses from Jeremiah 29 that I’ll be reading in this episode. I can quote Jeremiah 29:11 from memory. Perhaps you know the verse by heart, too.
The context surrounding Jeremiah 29:11 gives me even more hope for the future than the stand-alone memory verse. That’s because this Old Testament prophecy happened exactly the way the God of Israel said it would, which proves that even when the future doesn’t look promising or hopeful, we can still declare with confidence: God has good plans for my future.
Our current circumstances don’t determine our future. God does, and this scripture assures us His plans are for good and not for disaster.
I don’t understand what God is allowing right now. I believe His plans are good, but we keep hearing bad reports—from record highs for the price of essentials like food and gas, to record lows for the level of confidence in our leaders. Polls show that many people think their children will not be better off, but instead will have less than their parents. I see that already with my married children, who can’t afford to buy a home like my husband and I did when we got married.
But Jeremiah testifies to the validity of God’s promises. According to Jeremiah 29:11 God knows the plans He has for us. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give us a future and a hope. Like I said before, our current circumstances don’t determine our future. God does. This means that when the future looks bleak, that’s not the end of the story. I’m thankful that God not only promises to give us hope for tomorrow, but also hope for today.
The first ten episodes of my video podcast, “Find Joy” walk you through my book, Longing to Belong, and the entire series is now available for viewing. Learn more on my website at shawnamariebryant.com.
This week’s scripture: Jeremiah 29:8-14