by Rev Douglas Brauner
The power of forgiveness.
You can listen to today’s devotion by clicking on this SoundCloud link.
“But now this is what the LORD says: “Do not weep any longer, for I will reward you,” says the LORD. “Your children will come back to you from the distant land of the enemy. There is hope for your future,” says the LORD. “Your children will come again to their own land.”
Jeremiah 31:16 New Living Translation
When I shoot pictures with my Mamiya C220 camera I can only take twelve pictures per roll. That’s not a lot especially when I shoot between 50 to 100 pictures on my digital camera. Because of this limitation, I’m picky about my composition.
I knew something was up when I shot a roll in the Garden of the Gods. It appeared that I was taking more pictures than the camera’s counter had recorded. I was right. This picture is actually a triple exposure. I had failed to check whether the camera was set to single or multiple exposures. It was actually adjusted somewhere between the two settings. Sometimes the film would advance, and sometimes it wouldn’t.
I love this happy accident. I would never have composed this kind of picture on my own.
Unlike this picture, the rebellion of God’s people was not an accident. They knew that what they were doing was against God’s will. The prophets, including Jeremiah, reminded them of their wayward behavior. They didn’t love God with all their heart. They didn’t love their neighbor as themselves, and they knew it.
However, God never forgot his people and was faithful to his promise to bring his children back from exile in Babylon.
Not only does God use accidents for our good, he also uses our rebellion. I’m not proposing that we go on purposefully sinning (Romans 6:1), but there is hope even when we do. God doesn’t forget his children. God will not forget you. God has bound himself to the work of Jesus on the cross. It is this mercy of God that brings us to repentance, and makes a masterpiece out of our lives.
Copyright Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Colorado Springs, Colorado