I love to read familiar verses in different translations or paraphrases.
It helps my heart hear what I might otherwise miss because familiarity DOES breed a form a contempt even when considering the Word of God.
Recently, on my way through verses on HOPE I copied out Lamentations 3: 19-26.
A couple of the verses are ones most of us have seen or heard often:
But back up a little bit, and read it in a different version ( the VOICE) and it takes on even greater meaning for those of us walking in the Valley of the Shadow of Death.
Jeremiah (the author of Lamentations and known as the “Weeping Prophet”) is overcome with grief. He uses words I understand to describe how relentless sorrow and despair drag a heart down, down, down.
He’s bitter, he’s crippled, he can’t move forward or even move at all.
Grievous thoughts of affliction and wandering plagued my mind—
great bitterness and gall.
Grieving, my soul thinks back;
these thoughts cripple, and I sink down.
And, stopped in his tracks, he waits.
He knows he needs hope if he is to get up again.
So he turns his heart to the only One Who can help.
I remember and wait for this thought:
He remembers that God’s love never runs out. God will never suffer from compassion fatigue because the Lord is loyal, steadfast, inexhaustible.
God’s faithful love is new every morning!
As reliable and obvious as the light that spreads across the eastern sky and chases the darkness from every corner.
How enduring is God’s loyal love;
the Eternal has inexhaustible compassion.
Here they are, every morning, new!
Your faithfulness, God, is as broad as the day.
Repeating that truth brings a heart courage to face even the most frightening or dismal circumstances.
No one can stop the sun!
No one can stop the unfailing, loyal love of God from breaking forth!
Have courage, for the Eternal is all that I will need.
My soul boasts, “Hope in God; just wait.”
I can boast (make much of, speak boldly about) about my hope in the Lord because He never, ever fails. I will not be put to shame.
I am not left alone to my bitter thoughts and my affliction will not be forever. When I seek Him with my whole heart, He lifts me up and carries me through the darkest night.
It is good. The Eternal One is good to those who expect Him,
to those who seek Him wholeheartedly.
It is good to wait quietly
for the Eternal to make things right again.
God will not allow injustice to reign forever.
Sorrow will not have the last word!
It is good to wait in full confidence, trusting that the Lord I love, loves me and will redeem and restore everything the enemy has stolen.
“The sun comes up
It’s a new day dawning
It’s time to sing Your song again
Whatever may pass
And whatever lies before me
Let me be singing
When the evening comes”
Matt Redman 10,000 Reasons