Posted May 28, 2015
“The LORD is my portion,” says my soul,“therefore I will hope in him.”The LORD is good to those who wait for him,to the soul who seeks him.It is good that one should wait quietlyfor the salvation of the LORD.
We continue on right from where we left off last week in Lamentations 3:22-24. Though hope seemed completely lost for writer of Lamentations, it returned as he consciously recalled the covenantal love of the Lord, his “new every morning mercies”, and His incredible faithfulness to him in spite of his outward circumstances.
The culmination of this remembrance leads to the first phrase: “The Lord is my portion.” The phrase is found in Psalm 16:5 where the psalmist declares “the Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot.” Commenting on this verse, the ESV Study Bible says, “The psalm now describes the psalmist’s satisfaction with the Lord and his provision. The terms portion, lot, lines, and inheritance evoke the allocation of the land into family plots (perhaps with an allusion to the Lord as the Levites’ portion and inheritance; Num. 18:20); the song promotes contentment with the arrangements of one’s life, seeing them as providentially ordered.”
In your life, what would you call your portion? What gives you hope? What do you seek out that gives your life meaning? Anything or anyone apart from God that we seek out as our portion may satisfy for a season, but eventually it or they will let us down. There is one portion can’t be taken away, and that’s God Himself! Here the writer of Lamentations watched the destruction of Jerusalem which was tied his sense of security, identity, and calling. However, the earthly city of Jerusalem was never meant to be his portion but rather God alone. Jerusalem was never intended to be his portion, but rather God was. Money, the perfect spouse, sex, being liked, power, and comfort are failing portions, but God alone is the Portion that can infinitely provide for us in our need!
In light of God who is covenantally loving, faithful and merciful, the writer reminds us that we can in turn wait on Him and His goodness. Should He have evil purposes toward us, then waiting on Him would make no sense. However, we don’t need to wonder about His intentions, even as things seem unresolved in our lives. This confidence in His character allows us to “wait” for Him contentedly, not nervously or anxiously. Biblical waiting is never a sitting around twiddling our spiritual thumbs, humming to ourselves until He finally does something. It’s never a “God, if you follow through with your end of the bargain, then I can do what I told You I would do.” Rather, biblical waiting is a simple childlike trust in God that continues to operate in faith that because God has promised to complete the work He started, we can continue to work faithfully in the present knowing the final outcome. It has to do with us faithfully living in the moment in all the ways God has called us to already while trusting He will follow through with all He’s said and promised.
We see this sort of waiting and trust in God in the life of Jesus as He waited on and trusted God as He hung on the cross for our sins. Though everyone around Him that day on Golgotha would say that His life was under Caesar’s authority, ultimately Christ was under the care of His heavenly Father. Not only did God care for His Son faithfully, but He also faithfully cares and holds those who put their trust in Christ’s work for them, who call Christ their portion. Where do you put your hope? What do you call your portion? Can your portion save you? Is it good toward you? Find your hope and portion in Christ alone! He alone is faithful and good and powerful enough to save and satisfy you.
Song by Ryan Delmore.
Recording & mix by Drew Barefoot.
Artwork by Jonathan Lindsey.