Jeremiah, a crucial prophet of the Old Testament. Was just a kid.
Yes, you read that right. Likely still living under his parents’ roof and completely dependent on them. He had yet to even hit full adulthood! (Jer 1:6) He grew up in a suburb outside of Jerusalem called Anathoth. By all means, he sounds like a lot of kids growing up in America right now. Anyone who has grown up right outside of a massive city knows that it gives you a unique perspective. You grow up in this strange cultural mix of city folk, and farmer Bob down the road a few miles and to the right. It’s like you have a birds-eye view on the issues. You can see where everyone is coming from, and you find yourself somewhere in between. Almost like a mediator. You have your finger on the pulse of the people. Yet, they are too close to the issue to see it. This was exactly where Jeremiah was. He was called to influence not just Isreal, but was appointed to be a prophet ‘to the nations’. (1:5) through the message God gave him to preach.
No seriously, God told Jeremiah that his message would ‘have power over nations and over kingdoms’. (Jer 1:10) Guess what? It did, and Jeremiah became one of the most influential and history-altering prophets of the entire Bible. He represented a kind of ‘change of the guard’ if you will. Only the change wasn’t to something new, it was to call Gods people back into their covenant with Him. Isreal had all but given up on God during this time period, and they had turned to idols. The nation was in a state of political, cultural, and religious term oil. The times were chaotic, there was lots of change, and the Israelites had left their covenant behind to rot.
In other words, Jeremiah’s message couldn’t have come at a more difficult and impossible time. He was to convict Isreal and call them to repentance. God told Jeremiah from the start that he would be persecuted. His calling never got easier either, throughout his entire ministry, this is the pressure Jeremiah had to live with. He is credited by many scholars for having one of the hardest callings of any prophet. Yet he never faltered, he clung to the message that God gave him and stayed true to his calling. If you want to know what strong leadership looks like in hard times, look no further than Jeremiah. Oh, and remember. Just a kid we are talking about.
What’s my point?
God can use whoever he chooses to make something biblical happen. Things that can change the course of history. If he could use a kid still living in his parents’ basement to influence the nations, imagine what He can do through you.
No matter where you are in life, don’t write yourself off. At any point in time, God could drop your calling in your heart and help you change the world. Be ready, awake and focused. Or, as God directed Jeremiah:
‘Arise, dress for work, say only what God commands, and your foes will be given over to their terrors if they dismay you.’
In other words. God’s got your back. So do what God has put in your heart, and do it without fear!