Sometimes in life, it becomes necessary for us to let go of things. And it is all the more difficult to convince ourselves to let go of those things that we consider as given by God.
Jeremiah was dealing with such a generation. The opportunities to repent were not used by the people. Therefore, God had decreed that they would have to go out of their land, the promised land, for a period of time.
It is not that we have a God who sits up there and arbitrarily displaces people.
The people were clinging to the land without fidelity to God. And in the compromising of their covenant with the LORD God, they ended up over exploiting the land resources and also crushing their fellow inhabitants, particularly the poor and the helpless.
The people were clinging to the land thinking that they will never lose anything and that nothing is ever going to change.
However, we find God laying down clear guidelines for life and death:
“Thus says the LORD: Behold I have set before you the way of life and the way of death. He who stays in the city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence, but he who goes out and surrenders to the Chaldeans who are besieging you shall live and shall have his life as a prize of war.” (Jer. 21:8,9)
The summary is, let go of all that you have and surrender yourself to your enemy. The sovereign power of God is such that, when you have nothing and are at the mercy of your enemies, God is able to sustain you.
As the people of Judah had to, we also may be required to let go of things very dear and essential. And, it is in thus letting go of what we have that our hands are finally freed and God hopes that we will reach out again for God and cling on to Him instead. As difficult as it to convince our earthly minds, it is then that we truly reach home, though we become wanderers here.
Clinging to God is not our last hope; rather, it is the very destiny that we were created for.