Drop and read
Sometimes when I am in an adventurous mood or not sure what I need, I will open the Bible and just let my eyes land somewhere. More often than not, I find myself reading exactly what I need. For instance, I just landed on Jeremiah 8:18 which says, “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 with her?”
Can I gain meaning from this passage without the historical background of Jeremiah and the origin of the book? I say yes. When I read this, I hear the suffering of the ages. I hear voices from all of humankind crying out at the sense of separation from one another and God. I hear the despair in the voice of the writer as he looks upon the suffering of his people and longs for them to once again know the presence of God. The author of this book portrays the human condition in all of us and it comforts my heart as I go through a difficult period myself, knowing that others have experienced the same sense of separation and exile and came through it.