"It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Thy faithfulness."
Lamentations 3:22-23 (KJV)
GOD'S HAND OF MERCY
Despite living in abject poverty as a child, my family and I never talked about what we did not have because God provided what we needed. It wasn't easy; however, everyone in the community helped each other. Then, just when the struggle seemed unbearable, God opened an unexpected door via the United States Department of Agriculture. This agency instituted a surplus food program. Everybody in our tiny community of Fairmount was eligible to receive the powered eggs, powered milk, oatmeal, peanut butter, cheese, and canned meat which we deemed "mystery meat." We quickly learned that once the meat was fired in Crisco lard, it was quite tasty. Never once did we not have shelter. God always provided a roof over our heads and even a bucket to catch the water from our oftentimes leaky kitchen roof. No, we didn't have the best of comfort. We did, however, have the wisdom to know that God was not going to let us starve and that He was not going to see us without a place to live. Through the eyes of a child, I understood a little bit about God. Now, as an adult, my understanding is far superior because of the grace and mercy God has shown to me throughout my life. Just as Jeremiah, the writer of Lamentations, was able to find hope and comfort in His God even after the destruction of Jerusalem, I too have found hope and comfort amid life's unpleasant experiences. Even though he was heart-broken when he saw the ruins of Jerusalem, Jeremiah knew that God was with him in his brokenness because God had never failed him in the past. In Lamentations 5:19 (KJV), Jeremiah confirms his faith in God: "Thou, O Lord, remainest forever; thy throne from generation to generation." Indeed, God is faithful! Everyday!
Prayer: Thank You God for loving us. Because You have promised to never leave us nor to forsake us, we have hope. Help us, Heavenly Father, to always recognize and express gratitude for Your goodness, mercy, grace, and favor.
Submitted by Dea. Barbara Smalling