This morning’s devotion, following the Lectionary guide of the Devotional, comes from Andrew Pearson. And–did you know?–the Devotional is now available as an eBook? Check it out here.

…Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.” Then I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.” But the LORD said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’; for to all to whom I send you, you shall go, and whatever I command you, you shall speak. Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you, declares the LORD.” Then the LORD put out his hand and touched my mouth. And the LORD said to me, “Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.” (Jeremiah 1:1-9, ESV)


God really knows His people in the Bible. This is one of the constant themes—He not only knows the number of hairs on their heads, but even knows them before they were in their mothers’ wombs, and He knows them better than they know themselves. And this is true of life today, too. Even though we almost always “look within” for the resources to accomplish everything, we don’t really know as much about ourselves as we think.

On one hand, this inadequacy leads us to despair, both of ourselves and our so-called abilities to do what the Lord asks of us. On the other hand, with the self-realization we so long for yawning beyond us, we are strangely brought to a place of freedom.

Jeremiah, coming to this impasse, is able to go out in strength because this power came from outside of him. Jeremiah is called by God, as they say, but Jeremiah’s ability to fulfill the calling was not contingent upon the depth of his résumé, but instead his complete reliance on the Lord to stand in for him and walk with him. Armed with only this, Jeremiah does the impossible because it was actually not Jeremiah doing anything, but the Lord doing it all.

This kind of supernatural strength is necessary for all of life, from birth to grave—it doesn’t just apply to Jeremiah or the Patriarchs. Life is a challenge that leaves all of us muttering, like Jeremiah, “I do not know how to…” Are you in a job in which you feel way over your head? Struggling with a frigid marriage? A hapless child? Life confronts all of us with issues with which we feel woefully inept to deal. And God uses these things to show us the need for complete reliance. Just like Jeremiah, God is in the midst of it all, doing it all, while you do nothing.

Whatever it is you are faced with in your life today, God has called you to this place, but He is not leaving you there. He will use your weakness to His glory.