Formations lesson for Feb- 8- When All Seems Lost
January 28 2009 by Shane Nixon, Director of Development/Church Relations, Baptist Retirement Homes of North Carolina

Focal Passage: Jeremiah 29:1, 4-14

The focal passage of scripture for this lesson is a letter, written by Jeremiah to a group of people who were being “carried away in captivity” from Jerusalem. The King, Nebuchadnezzar, has had the elders, priests, and prophets all carried away into captivity. Now the working title of the lesson is when all “seems” lost.  I am not sure about you, but for me, once the carrying away begins it isn’t a “seems” situation any more. Nope, at that point we have crossed over to the “all is actually lost” arena.

The word of the Lord, as delivered by the prophet is almost a “don’t panic” message. God insists that the children of Israel build houses, take wives, beget sons, and seek the peace of the city they are being carried to. I expect this message wasn’t met with a hearty “you betcha.” If I had been among them, I’d have been screaming that it was exactly the time to panic.

All seems lost? No all is lost, and the word of the Lord is “don’t panic.”  Recent days and times from financial markets to the housing situation show an “all is lost” state of affairs. We don’t want people to tell us not to panic; we want them to give us a reason we shouldn’t. In the matters of finances and housing, that isn’t happening. In fact we are being told the worst may be yet to come. All is not only lost, but some of what might have come to us eventually is now being lost too.  

But with God, it is never quite this way.

You see what we must realize is the fallacy in my earlier presumption, that there comes a point at which we cross over from all seeming to be lost, to where all actually is. With God all is never lost. With God there is always hope.

In verse 14 of the focal passage, God’s words are words of that hope. I will gather you back together, I will bring you from the far place, I will be found by you . . . not I might, not I could, but I will: A definitive statement from which we must take hope. Even when all seems lost, it isn’t. Even when all feels lost it cannot be, not with God.  

When all seems lost we must only remember to turn to the God of hope, with whom all is never lost.

1/28/2009 3:00:00 AM by Shane Nixon, Director of Development/Church Relations, Baptist Retirement Homes of North Carolina | with 1 comments

Bob McPherson
Thanks for this down-to-earth powerful message that you have written. I led our Wednesday Night Sunday School lesson at our church this past Wednesday night and your article tied the lesson all together. Your points bring out our probable reactions to real-life what most people would have and what some have already felt. As Jeremiah reminded the exiles in Babylon, God does have a plan and we have to stick it out to get the benefit of the plan.
Good to find your writings.

Bob McPherson
Calvary Baptist Church
2/7/2009 10:13:58 AM