“Do good things for the city where I sent you as captives. Pray to the Lord for the city where you are living, because if good things happen in the city, good things will happen to you also” (Jeremiah 29:7).
Today’s Daily Post asks what do we like most, and least, about the place where we live? What’s its biggest problem and how would we tackle it?
As well as my parents and some of my closest friends being nearby, one of the best things about the place where I live is its beauty. We have a range of hills here, the highest of which has an easy tarmac path from a car-park right to the top, and I absolutely love being on those hills in the sunshine. The only drawback is the number of dogs likely to be running loose up there.
Our biggest problem? Well, I hear that in the area where I go to church, one in three households live in poverty. I personally help to tackle this by involvement with my local food bank, but as a church, with those people right on our doorstep, I’m sure we could do a whole lot more. Obstacles like lack of transport or unemployment aren’t so easy to solve, but if we can’t get paid work, we can find other ways to make use of our time.
What’s the biggest problem in your neighbourhood? Maybe you could play a part in tackling it. When God’s people went as prisoners to Babylon, God used someone called Jeremiah to encourage them to pray for the land where they lived, and to do good in it. It’s wise for us to get involved in the place where we are. Otherwise, we’ll only have ourselves to blame if things go downhill. As a Christian, being ‘Set apart’ isn’t necessarily about distance; it’s about living life with a purpose different from that of the world around us. Giving a percentage of our money to God instead of keeping it all for ourselves is being set apart.
Do you know one other thing I like about this place? Just like Jeremiah said to the Israelites in Babylon, it’s temporary. We won’t always have to live in this troubled world. In our hearts we can look forward to our heavenly home, where our Father will love us and keep us safe forever.