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Jeremiah 8:18-9:3, Mourning for the People

What a passionate God! Growing up I learned of a God that was loving, but in a cool, calm, emotionless way. It’s hard to connect with a God that takes everything in stride, that shows no emotion, that stands above the passion experienced by human beings.

But these words come from a God that is crazy sick with love. God loves so very deeply, that when people betray God, it burns God’s heart. God weeps “a fountain of tears” for God’s people. We are God’s people, too. For us, God’s heart burns with fiery passion. God weeps fountains when we walk away from God. This is a God that is willing to feel deeply, even when the feeling is grief. Because the flip side of grief is a love so deep, it brings a joy that nothing else can produce. God loves us with fire and frenzy, and God will never love any less.

Jeremiah 8:18-9:3

My joy is gone, grief is upon me, my heart is sick. Hark, the cry of my poor people from far and wide in the land: “Is the Lord not in Zion? Is her King not in her?” (“Why have they provoked me to anger with their images, with their foreign idols?”) “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” For the hurt of my poor people I am hurt, I mourn, and dismay has taken hold of me. Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then has the health of my poor people not been restored?

O that my head were a spring of water, and my eyes a fountain of tears, so that I might weep day and night for the slain of my poor people! O that I had in the desert a traveler’s lodging place, that I might leave my people and go away from them! For they are all adulterers, a band of traitors. They bend their tongues like bows; they have grown strong in the land for falsehood, and not for truth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they do not know me, says the Lord.