“’For I know the plans that I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you, and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ~Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
Peace falls on me when I read these definitions. I breathe deep and exhale long and slow. The word shalowm itself and its definitions seem to hold a sacred power over me. And I know that if I were to print the LTB (Lee Translation Bible), I would choose to translate Jeremiah 29:11 with the word “peace” rather than “prosper” even though “prosperity” is one of the meanings. Actually, maybe I would not use an English word to translate this verse. Maybe I’d simply use the Hebrew because it holds so much more depth and meaning than any of our English words can convey.
“I know the thoughts that I think toward you,” says the Lord, “thoughts of shalowm . . .
Completeness . . . Contentment. . . Soundness. . . Tranquility. . . Peace in relationships with God and man.
Jeremiah promised that God’s not an angry God up in the sky waiting to thump us on the head. His thoughts toward his children (the Jews) and those adopted into the family are thoughts of a restored and peaceful relationship. It’s a relationship that makes us complete and gives us hope to hold onto—like a cord. That cord of hope and promise will see us through if we don’t let go.
Chewing on . . . the thought that peace with God completes me. Click To Tweet
Your turn: How do the definitions above breathe new life into this familiar verse to you?
Finding Purpose in God’s Shalowm
[Definitions from: Key Word Study Bible (NIV) and BlueletterBible.org.]
For the next few months I will be working on a proposal for my next project–a daily devotional called the Bite of Bread. I shared it with you last week, and you all responded with enthusiasm! Thank you for the encouragement. Due to time limits and the desire to continue posting soul nourishment during this undertaking, I will post one of the devotions from the project on Fridays. I would love to get your feedback on what works and what doesn’t–what speaks to your soul and what bounces off your brain. Thank you! I pray they bless you.