You probably already know this about me, but I’m a sucker for Christmas. I love the lights and decorations and music and all of the little extras that we don’t normally have. When else do we get to wear goofy hats and give each other presents and just have fun? I always feel a little bummed out after New Year’s Day rolls around and the holidays are over. It’s the same cold weather outside and darkness way too early, but without the lights or the mistletoe. Something even happens to the gifts we get—the new wears off! Before we know it, we’re back in the routine of things, back to normal.
One of my favorite “new year’s passages” is Lamentations 3:22-23. It’s in the middle of a book in the Old Testament that is describing a train wreck. Jeremiah looks at Jerusalem and sees the pain and the suffering that sin has caused. He sees God’s hand against his people, instead of for it. It breaks his heart. He cries out, “This is not how it should be!” and weeps. The result is this little book, Lamentations. It’s not the happiest book in the Bible by any stretch.
In the middle of that book is this gem: “The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning.”
God’s mercy isn’t like Christmas. It isn’t like a birthday gift or even like a new car. The new doesn’t ever wear out on God’s mercy. Sometimes I forget it, neglect it, or even take it for granted—but God’s mercies remain as shining and spectacular as they were the day he first invented them. That’s what keeps us going!