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Jeremiah 29:4-9New International Version (NIV)
4 This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says to all those I carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: 5 “Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. 6 Marry and have sons and daughters; find wives for your sons and give your daughters in marriage, so that they too may have sons and daughters. Increase in number there; do not decrease. 7 Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper.” 8 Yes, this is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: “Do not let the prophets and diviners among you deceive you. Do not listen to the dreams you encourage them to have. 9 They are prophesying lies to you in my name. I have not sent them,” declares the Lord.
False prophets had been telling Israel that God would not let Babylon destroy them because they were God’s chosen people and they had God’s temple! But the prophet, Jeremiah, told them all along that God cares more about their hearts and their love for each other and the poor. After being defeated and taken into Babylon the false prophets, at it again, told them this exile would be short-lived and they would be back home soon. This time Jeremiah told them that God actually wanted them to bless the Babylonians by putting down roots and being productive citizens. Sometimes we are not happy with our circumstances, but maybe God has put us in that place to be a blessing to others. This is not turning lemons into lemonade, but a change of heart from focusing primarily on ourselves, to focusing on God and others. How might God be inviting you to be a blessing to those around you?