This past weekend, Pastor Jeff Manion taught how God gives us opportunities to turn back to him by showing us the full volume of one of our problems. Using the image of a garbage can being tipped on end, there are moments when the fullness of our problems lay bare before us. It’s clear to us and everyone around us that all is not well.
In today’s passage, the Lord commands Jeremiah to dictate 20 years of prophecies to Baruch the scribe, who then reads the prophecies about injustice, idolatry, and impending judgment at a temple gate. Like a garbage can being tipped over, Jeremiah laid out the sins of the Israelites. This is an act designed to awaken their hearts in hope they might turn from their rebellion and experience God’s forgiveness.
We also encounter moments when our garbage can is turned upside down. Whether it’s envy, lust, anger or chronic busyness, how we move forward is now up to us. However, the fact that our “trash” is poured out on the ground before us doesn’t mean we’ll change but it at least gives us the opportunity. This is God’s mercy towards us hoping we’ll hear, turn and experience his forgiveness.
As you begin the week, take a moment to consider this week’s One Big Question: “When was a time your garbage can was turned over and how did you respond?” This a sobering question but ideally, when our sin is exposed, we develop a pattern of turning back to God. Take time this week to discuss this with a close friend or your small group.