The word “forsaken” has, for me, a desolate and dark ring about it. It is one of these terms that create within me a distinct feeling of desertion – it seems more than just a descriptive word!
That many people in our world, for a million reasons, feel forsaken there is no doubt. From the forgotten and abused children everywhere to the man who has squandered the wealth that had once bought him many friends – the silent pain of the forsaken debilitates and destroys. May God have mercy and grace towards them.
Yet God himself is not immune to the desolation of being forsaken. It is a painful, distressing cry that Adonai, through the prophet Jeremiah , bursts out with –
“For my people have done two evil things:
They have abandoned me—
the fountain of living water.
And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns
that can hold no water at all!
And this cry, as Adonai goes on to express, is the cry of a husband abandoned by his adulterous wife and his heart is broken – he has been forsaken!
I have heard my fair share of what we call “hell fire preaching” – but rarely have I seen expressed in any preaching [including my own I am ashamed to say] the emotion of a broken hearted God as he weeps over his rebellious wife and estranged children. Yet, as we have noted before, the tears of a broken hearted God has more effect on the rebel heart than a thousand cold sermons.
Please read Jeremiah 2 and tell me God has no capacity for feelings of abandonment, pain and desertion. He knows what it feels like to be forsaken – which is why he rejoices so, along with the angels of heaven, when reconciliation occurs! And today, when we turn again to the gaze and open arms of our beloved [no matter where we have been] we can take to ourselves his wonderful promise –
Never again will you be called “The Forsaken City”
or “The Desolate Land.”
Your new name will be “The City of God’s Delight”
and “The Bride of God,”
for the Lord delights in you
and will claim you as his bride.
Your children will commit themselves to you, O Jerusalem,
just as a young man commits himself to his bride.
Then God will rejoice over you
as a bridegroom rejoices over his bride.
Isaiah 62 4 & 5