Yes, we like to do our own thing, and as we do, we grumble, whine, pout, get angry, lie, hide, be impatient, use harsh words, just to name a few, that causes us to turn our backs on God. Despite this reality, God says, “My wayward children, come back to Me, and I will heal your wayward hearts.” (Jeremiah 3:22) We know that we fall short of God everyday, yet God in His mercy pursues us relentlessly.
We just celebrated a day where you tell others that you love them. Today, I want us to focus on how God loves us every minute of every day, despite our flaws and shortcomings. He relentlessly pursues us for His love is enduring and eternal. We get a picture of His love in Jeremiah 3:11-25. God’s pride and joy, Israel, keeps looking elsewhere instead of to God. Jeremiah 2 and the first part of chapter 3 tells us what God thinks of the Israelites. He likens them to an unfaithful wife. They cheat on God.
By the time you get to Jeremiah 3:11, we see the heart of God in it’s purest form. To really understand God, we must face the truth. We are an unfaithful bunch of humans. We are no different than the Israelites. From this passage, God calls His children faithless, wayward people who live unfaithful to Him. They choose crooked paths for they have forgotten Him. Oh, how we forget God too.
In His pursuit to woo us back to Himself, God shows us what we need to do. Look at verses 12-13 where God says, “Come home to me again!” My friends, this is what makes God unbelievably loving and merciful. He is the God that never gives up on us!
When we are in His presence, we are home.
Not only is God merciful, but He doesn’t stay angry at us when we turn from our wayward ways and face Him. His love is never rescinded towards us. He always loves us despite our own actions.
When we face Him, God does want us to do a few things. We need to remove any elephants in the room that are barriers to walking with God. We must acknowledge the guilt that we carry around. God wants us to admit that we have rebelled against Him, and that at times we refuse to listen to His voice. God holds transparency and honesty in high regard.
In verses 14-15, God desires for us to return home. He will be our master who leads us to where we need to be. He gives us shepherds along the way to guide us in knowledge of His truths and with understanding. The Holy Spirit is the Shepherd that leads us into truth, see John 16:13. Pastors are given this role as well in the Church. They are to lead their flocks, their congregations, to know the truth and teach them how to live it out.
When we return home, we are never alone.
Once God restores us, we will find contentment. Look at verses 16-18, we will no longer wish to live like we used to. God says, “They will no longer stubbornly follow their own evil desires.” When we are home with God, our souls are settled. We realize that the fleeting passions for worldly flair don’t even come close to the presence of our Savior. We come to the same conclusion that Solomon did in Ecclesiastes 1:2, “Everything is meaningless, completely meaningless!” Our hearts become full and satisfied when we follow after God. Simon Peter understood this. Look John 6:68-69, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. We believe, and we know You are the Holy One of God.”
Without confession from our sins, we will live in such a way that our past controls us.
Notice what God tells Jeremiah in verse 19. This is the heart of God, my friends. God desires us. He likes us. He wants to treat us as family where we call Him Father. He wants to give us His best. Notice how verse 19 says, “the finest possession in the world.” Don’t miss this. If God was referring to giving you what the world offers, then the word possession would be plural, but it isn’t. It is singular.
There is only one possession that we need.
“I wanted nothing more than to give you this beautiful land,” God tells Jeremiah. For Israel, it was the Promised Land set aside by God. For us, today, it is Christ. In Him, we have all that we need. There is nothing that this world offers us that compares to God’s Son and what He did for us.
In the final verses of this passage, we see the response that God patiently waits for.
“Yes, Lord, we are coming!”
We are to admit that our sinful ways are but a delusion. We realize that what we desire for ourselves is deceptive. We see that salvation is found only in God. We remorse over the dishonor that our sins bring God, and we know that we are sinners right from the start.
We are broken over our sins at the foot of the cross.
Brokenness brings us into the arms of God where He places our head on His shoulder, strokes our hair, wipes our tears, and tells us that it will be okay. He will lead us valiantly and victoriously through the rest our days on earth until He takes us to heaven. Until then, there is never a moment where He is not pursuing us.
Make today the day where you answer His call, “Hey, beloved child of mine, Come home to Me.”