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August 14, 2020 8:00 pm
Nora was tiny, but “Bridget”—the belligerent, six-foot-tall woman glowering down at her—didn’t intimidate her. Bridget couldn’t even say why she had stopped at the crisis pregnancy center; she’d already made up her mind to “get rid of this . . . kid.” So Nora gently asked questions, and Bridget rudely deflected them with profanity-laced tirades. Soon Bridget got up to leave, defiantly declaring her intent to end her pregnancy.
Slipping her small frame between Bridget and the door, Nora asked, “Before you go, may I give you a hug, and may I pray for you?” No one had ever hugged her before—not with healthy intentions, anyway. Suddenly, unexpectedly, the tears came.
Nora beautifully reflects the heart of our God who loved His people Israel “with an everlasting love” (Jeremiah 31:3). The people had stumbled into the hard consequences of their persistent violation of His guidelines. Yet God told them, “I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. I will build you up again” (vv. 3–4).
Bridget’s history is complex. (Many of us can relate.) Until she ran into real love that day, her belief had been that God and His followers would only condemn her. Nora showed her something different: the God who won’t ignore our sin because He loves us beyond imagination. He welcomes us with open arms. We don’t have to keep running.
Should welcome it.
It's time for Our Daily Bread. The reading for today was written by Tim Gustus and it's titled running into love Nora was tiny, but Bridget's belligerent six-foot tall woman glowering down at her didn't intimidate her. Bridget couldn't even say why she had stopped at the crisis pregnancy center.
She'd already made up her mind to get rid of this kid. So Nora gently asked questions and Bridget rudely deflected them with profanity laced tirades soon. Bridget got up to leave, defiantly declaring her intent to end her pregnancy, slipping her small frame between Bridget on the door. Nora asked for you go, may I give you a hug and may I pray for you. No one had ever hugged her before, not with healthy intentions anyway. Suddenly, unexpectedly, the tears came.
Nora beautifully reflects the heart of our God, who loved his people Israel with an everlasting love in Jeremiah 31. The people had stumbled into the hard consequences of their persistent violation of his guidelines.
Yet God told them I have drawn you with unfailing kindness I will build you up again.
Bridget's history is complex.
Many of us can relate until she ran into real love that day her belief had been that God and his followers would only condemn her.
Nora showed her something different. The God who won't ignore our sin, because he loves us beyond imagination. He welcomes us with open arms. We don't have to keep running today's Our Daily Bread devotional Scripture reading is from Jeremiah chapter 31 verses one through nine. At that time, declares the Lord. I will be the God of all the families of Israel and they will be my people.
This is what the Lord says the people who survived the sword will find favor in the wilderness, I will come to give rest to Israel, the Lord appeared to us in the past saying I have loved you with an everlasting love. I have drawn you with unfailing kindness I will build you up again and you virgin Israel will be rebuilt again you will take up your temples and go out to dance with the joyful again. You will plant vineyards on the hills of Samaria. The farmers will plant them and enjoy their fruit.
There will be a day when watchmen cried out on the hills of Efraim, come, let us go up to Zion to the Lord our God. This is what the Lord says sing with joy for Jacob shout for the foremost of the nations make your praises heard and say Lord save your people. The remnant of Israel. See, I will bring them forth from the land of the north and gather them from the ends of the earth among them will be the blind and the lame expectant mothers and women in labor a great throng will return. They will come with weeping they will pray as I bring them back.
I will leave them beside streams of water on a level path where they will not stumble, because I am Israel's father and Efraim is my firstborn son. Now let's pray heavenly father, thank you so much for your grace and your mercy that can break through even the most hardened heart. So often we fail to reflect this kind of love to others and we cause great harm. Please forgive us and then fill us with a true sense of your love today so that will display that love to someone else. Thank you, Lord. It's in Jesus name that we pray. Amen on today's encouragement was provided by Our Daily Bread ministries