An express assurance on which expectation is to be based.
As we have been on this sixteen-year-long journey with Jessica, the Lord has spoken in profound and amazing ways. (It’s hard to believe her 16th birthday is in a couple of weeks!) He has been reminding me the last few weeks of His presence and promises throughout her life.
On August 13, 2000 we took Jessica before our church to have her dedicated to the Lord. She was a sixteen-month-old happy baby girl. In just eight months she would be taken from us over a seven month period and placed with her birth father. My previous post explains in a little more detail.
The church provided a Certificate of Dedication. We were asked to choose a scripture we wanted printed on the certificate. Jeremiah 29:11-12 was an easy choice. I felt embarrassed and disappointed when I received her certificate. When filling out the form, I accidentally wrote Jeremiah 29:11-14. I thought versus 13 and 14 were awful printed on the certificate and did not make sense. I remember thinking, “they must think I’m crazy!”
“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the Lord, and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you, declares the Lord, and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.” Jeremiah 29:11-14
It wasn’t until years later that I recalled the certificate in light of everything that happened. I remembered my “mistake” and my heart flip-flopped. The Lord knew what was coming for Jessica! On her very Certificate of Dedication to Him, He placed a promise! I believe He fulfilled His promise and brought her back to us physically many years ago when she returned back to our home and our arms.
Yesterday, while at church, my heart flip-flopped again as these verses popped up on the big screen. Jessica is away (in exile) at House of Hope and she will return again to our home and our arms. The promise is being fulfilled once more!
God is doing a new work this time. It’s not just a physical leaving and returning. The spiritual portion is being fulfilled. She is calling out to Him and seeking Him with all her heart! This time the captivity He is bringing her back from is spiritual. He is restoring her heart and mind, setting her free from the trauma and brokenness. The chains are breaking! The walls are coming down! Jessica, the captive, is truly being set free!
I thank God for His promises through His Word. His Word is relevant and personal. What He has promised He will fulfill!