I have to admit, when I read Jeremiah 13 for the very first time I was shocked. God, REALLY had Jeremiah put on a loin cloth and hide them in the rocks of the Epharates? God? Our God? For those of you who don’t know what a loin cloth is, another translation says underwear. If God had Jeremiah obey this command, it should not be a shock to us that God does things much differently than we would expect and he does so with purpose.
“This is what the Lord said to me: “Go and buy a linen loincloth and put it on, but do not wash it.” So I bought the loincloth as the Lord directed me, and I put it on. Then the Lord gave me another message: “Take the linen loincloth you are wearing, and go to the Euphrates River. Hide it there in a hole in the rocks.” So I went and hid it by the Euphrates as the Lord had instructed me. A long time afterward the Lord said to me, “Go back to the Euphrates and get the loincloth I told you to hide there.” So I went to the Euphrates and dug it out of the hole where I had hidden it. But now it was rotting and falling apart. The loincloth was good for nothing. Then I received this message from the Lord :”
Jeremiah 13:1-8 NLT
If there is one thing I love about Jeremiah and God’s relationship it is the unique way that God speaks to him. Such as the underwear incident or the simple vision of an almond branch found in the very first vision God gave him. I also love Jeremiah’s obedience. Throughout his life he did not question God, he was obedient because he knew that God was speaking and had a message to deliever through him.
Has God asked you do to anything odd or unusual? When you feel that God has asked you to do something weird, I want you to remember Jeremiah’s story. God not only had a word for Jeremiah but Judah and Jerusalem too, an important one at that. A word that had the ability to bring repentance to hardened hearts. God does not command us to do things that so not have an eternal motive. Like Jeremiah, we should be less focused on why and more focused and who is giving us the direction. I cannot help but think that Jeremiah was obedient to even the the loin cloth because he knew WHO God was. He remembered what he first spoken to him about being anointed to speak and all the words he had spoken before that.
As I said, God does not do anything without an eternal purpose. So even if it seems odd, do not be hesitant to follow through. Another way God has show me this is found in Ezekiel.
Speak my words to them whether they listen or refuse to listen, for they are rebellious.
Ezekiel 2:7 CSB
It does not matter what happens after I do what God has spoken for me to do. What is importance is MY obedience to the command he has given me. It is important to remember that God is with you and will never leave or forsake you. It is just as important to remember that people’s reactions are not a reflection of your heart but theirs. We are called to do things in love. Many times people do not want to hear what God has to say to them through us, just like Judah and Jereusalem. But Jeremiah’s was being used to speak a message directly from God that had the ability to change the hearts of man. When we think about the command from an eternal perspective, changing someone’s eternity, there is a new found urgency to do whatever God asks.
What has God spoken for you to do? Yield to the Holy Spirit, say YES. A life with Holy Spirit leading the way is anything shy of adventurous. Don’t be scared, let God’s love lead the way. There will never be a time where you’ve said yes to God and be disappointed.
More Scripture To Chew On:
- Jeremiah 1
- Ezekiel 2
- John 15:14-17
- John 14:15-17