"I'm back! I'm back in the saddle again!" the classic rock song plays in my head as I've entered the office or Harper Park this past week. In some ways it feels like I've only been gone for a month, as the old habits and routines have come back quickly. But it other ways, it does feel like I was gone the full 5 months of my sabbatical, and I definitely feel rested, spiritually-renewed, and recharged from it.
Which is a great contrast to what we're studying in the book of Jeremiah. There wasn't a lot of spiritual renewal and revival going on after King Josiah died. The people were full of pride, stubbornly following their own hearts and other gods, refusing to hear God's words. So God tells Jeremiah that He would "spoil the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem" as He sent judgment on His people. It's a good thing that we don't carry around a bunch of pride and stubbornness that God has to break! Right? Right?!?
I look forward to stepping back into the pulpit this Sunday. Jeremiah 13 is another challenging passage, with loincloths, drunkenness, whoring, and skirts being lifted up - all kinds of crazy stuff. I look forward to working through the passage with you! - Dave