Dressed and Ready

“The word of the Lord came to me, saying,

“’Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
and before you were born I consecrated you;
I appointed you a prophet to the nations.’

“Then I said, ‘Ah, Lord God! Behold, I do not know how to speak, for I am only a youth.’ But the Lord said to me,

“Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’;
for to all to whom I send you, you shall go,
and whatever I command you, you shall speak.
Do not be afraid of them,
for I am with you to deliver you,
declares the Lord.

“Then the Lord put out his hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said to me,

“’Behold, I have put my words in your mouth.
See, I have set you this day over nations and over kingdoms,
to pluck up and to break down,
to destroy and to overthrow,
to build and to plant…’

“But you, dress yourself for work; arise, and say to them everything that I command you. Do not be dismayed by them, lest I dismay you before them.  And I, behold, I make you this day a fortified city, an iron pillar, and bronze walls, against the whole land, against the kings of Judah, its officials, its priests, and the people of the land. They will fight against you, but they shall not prevail against you, for I am with you, declares the Lord, to deliver you.” Jeremiah 1:4-10,17-19

It is an understatement to assume Jeremiah was not enamored with his call from God to pronounce judgment, and that with little fruit over decades. He saw only his inadequacies, but God spoke His adequacy, directing him to report dressed for duty in confidence of His ability and instruction. And provide He did. Over and over He spoke to the faithful prophet, giving clear messages and word pictures to pronounce the hard truth of judgment and call to repentance.

There is a mysterious combination in our calling and anointing from God. He who was from the beginning has known us as long, and appointed to us gifts and purpose for our day and time. He initiates the knowing and the consecration, and abides as Enabler and Deliverer. Our part is to get dressed, arise, and do His work. (Esther 4:14; Psalm 139:13-16; Acts 17:26; Romans 12:6-8)

How prepared am I for God’s assignments? Do I lollygag in meaningless occupations, filling my mind with information and images that matter nothing for eternity and rob my mind of holy space to listen to God’s voice? Am I quick to frenzy myself with trite busyness and so crowd out substantial, God-inspired efforts? How willing am I to obey exactly what He says to do, as opposed to selecting to do only what I prefer or costs me nothing? (Matthew 17:4-5)

If we avail ourselves of God’s call and guidance, He will meet every weakness with His presence and promises. He who calls is faithful to do what He says, and to supply all we need for His assigned tasks. (Philippians 2:13; 1 Thessalonians 5:24)

Father, keep me dressed and ready, in practicality and Spirit, to go when You call, and do all You ask, for the sake of your people, kingdom, and glory.

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