It’ll be alright. The worst is behind you. He’ll be OK. God has a plan. Heard those words before? Maybe you’ve even said them yourself. They are words meant to encourage. Words spoken when there seems to be nothing else to say.
Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”
But what if those words don’t bring comfort? What happens when this plan God has doesn’t feel so good? How do you respond to those words when you’re in the midst of a crisis?
Let’s go back for a moment and learn about the time when these words were spoken. The Israelites were just exiled from the Promised Land. They were now living in a land filled with sin. The prophet Jeremiah wrote the above words from the Scripture in a letter to the exiles. But the letter continues beyond the part about God’s plan for good.
See, he goes on to tell them more about what God promises. Verse 12 says, “In those days when you pray, I will listen.” What days? The days when you’re exiled from your home, from where you’re comfortable, the days when you’re feeling alone and wondering if it’ll ever get better. You know, those days. What does He say to do? Pray. What will He do? Listen.
Now those are comforting words to me. God’s plans are bigger than our current circumstances. He knows that. Sometimes it’s near impossible for us to see that when we’re in the midst of a raging storm. What Jeremiah 29:12 assures me is that during the days, the ones that are lonely, the ones when things aren’t OK or even getting better, the ones when I’m not sure if the sun will shine, there’s something I can do. I can pray and seek God’s presence. And there He’ll be, listening, understanding, waiting to remind me that He has a plan.