Yirmiyahu Eight: Hopes

There’s a verse in this chapter that seems to speak directly to a longing that so many people feel, especially at this time in human history. Seeing it in Tanakh demonstrates to me that feelings like this are universal, and timeless, and that things that were relevant thousands of years ago continue to resonate today. “We hoped for peace, but no good came; for a time of healing, but behold, terror (Jeremiah 8:15).” It’s a dismal verse in many ways, alluding to disappointments and letdowns for people who are hoping for a better future, but not seeing it come into being. One thing that I want to pick out from the verse is that it says that the people hoped for a future time of peace, but not that they acted, or did anything in particular in order to bring it about. In an age of social media, it’s incredibly easy for us to post tweets or Facebook statuses praying for the world, supporting or condeming the actions of others. But without tangible steps taken, our hopes and prayers aren’t doing anything. Could the time of healing not have come because the people were so busy longing that they didn’t do anything to hasten its arrival? What can we do today to take action in order to bring about the world that we want to inhabit?

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