“By the rivers of Babylon, there we sat down, yea, we wept, when we remembered Zion. We hanged our harps upon the willows in the midst thereof. For there they that carried us away captive required of us a song; and they that wasted us required of us mirth, saying, Sing us one of the songs of Zion. How shall we sing the LORD’S song in a strange land?” Psalm 101:2

Sin and disobedience had caused God’s people to be carried away as captives to Babylon. They felt that God wasn’t with them and that they had no reason to sing and rejoice. They forgot God’s promise that He would never forsake them and that He was still God even in a strange land. They forgot that the God of Jerusalem was still God in Babylon. He knew exactly where they were.

In Jeremiah 29, the prophet Jeremiah sent a letter to the elders in Babylon giving them instructions as to how they were to live there. They were to build houses, plant gardens, and enjoy the fruit of them. He told them to pray for peace in the land of their captivity and that in doing so they would find peace. He told them they would be there for seventy years and then as they prayed and sought God, He would bring them back to their own land. His plans for them were plans of peace and would be fulfilled.

There may be times when the Lord allows us to go things that are not what we would wish for our lives. We may find ourselves in places that we would rather not be. It’s hard to sing and praise God in those situations. But we realize that He does not change, and He is still with us. When we lift our voices in praise and worship to Him, our feelings will change. When we pray for our situation, we find peace for our souls.

God has a plan and a purpose of each one of us as Jeremiah wrote in verse 11: “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”

Are you facing something difficult in your life today? It’s not time to question God, just thank Him for all the times He has met you in the past, lift your voice in praise and thanksgiving. He knows exactly where you are. He will give you peace and the strength you need for today.

Prayer: Thank you Jesus that you know exactly where we are, and what we are going through, and you have a plan and a purpose for us. Help us to worship you and trust you.

Devotion by Anne Johnston

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