May 06, 2007

Remember God's Faithfulness

Lamentations 3:19-26

Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed ... Great is your faithfulness. Lam. 3:22-23


While traveling through the United States and Canada to help congregations prepare for their denomination's 150th anniversary, I was often asked two questions from fellow church members: "Aren't we patting ourselves on the back when we celebrate an anniversary like this? And should we really be celebrating when so much in our history should not have happened?"

The answer to these questions is that the church doesn't celebrate its own accomplishments or achievements. Christ's church celebrates the faithfulness of God, who, despite our sin and shortcomings, is willing to use ordinary believers. Great is God's faithfulness!

In Jeremiah's day, things were really grim for God's people. They were taken into captivity because of their sins. Life was more difficult than most of us can imagine. The people's sins were many, and the nation was in ruins. It would have been easy to give up. But Jeremiah wrote, "Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope: Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is [God's] faithfulness."

There are many sins of which the church must repent. But through it all, our God remains faithful. And whatever has been accomplished for good is only because of the Lord's great faithfulness.

"Great is thy faithfulness! Morning by morning new mercies I see; all I have needed thy hand hath provided. Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!" In Jesus' name, Amen.

About the author — Arthur J. Schoonveld

Rev. Art Schoonveld is a retired minister in the Christian Reformed Church. Before retiring in 2001, he served churches in California, Illinois, and Michigan. Since his retirement he has worked part-time for the denomination and has served as an interim pastor. Art and his wife, Anita, have four children and nine grandchildren.

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