Build Houses and Live in Them

This meditation is based on a passage for April 15, 2011 in the Daily Lectionary Year 1 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Jeremiah 29:1, 4-14

Reflection and Question: Jerusalem has fallen to the Babylonians and many have been driven into exile to present day Iraq. Jeremiah remains in Jerusalem but is in good contact with the Jews that are far away. The letter he sends to them is completely contrary to the word of other prophets and to what was Scripture then. Jeremiah’s encouragement to take wives, have children, plant gardens, build homes and pray for their city is unheard of and unnecessary to the other prophets who predict a swift return home. Jeremiah, spurned in his day, turns out to be right. How do you know when prophets are right?

Prayer: God of the Jews in exile and the prophets who serve them, the world around us makes us feel as if we are in exile though we may not have moved at all. Bring true prophetic words to life for us to help us live fully now. Bring us home. Amen.