“The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. ‘The LORD is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in Him.’ The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth. Let him sit alone in silence when it is laid on him; let him put his mouth in the dust—there may yet be hope; let him give his cheek to the one who strikes, and let him be filled with insults. For the Lord will not cast off forever, but, though He cause grief, He will have compassion according to the abundance of His steadfast love; for He does not afflict from His heart or grieve the children of men.” (Lamentations 3:22-33 ESV)
What does it mean, to say, “The Lord is my portion”? Nowadays we tend to use that word for part of something—for example, a helping of soup or spaghetti! But Jeremiah is using that word in a different sense. “The Lord is my inheritance,” he might say. “The Lord is the portion of land that I received from my ancestors, that we were given by God’s decision back in the days of Moses.” The books of Numbers and Deuteronomy refer to inherited land this way—and they make it clear that certain people, like God’s priests, were not entitled to land. They got the Lord as a portion instead.
Let’s think about this. If you have a portion of land for your inheritance, what does that mean? It means that you and the land have a connection—that you are going to stay with it and work it and harvest it—that you expect to get what you need to live from your land. It also means that all of this is going to take time. Nobody plants and reaps a harvest in a single day. The land and the people who live on it have a long-term relationship—one which is rich and fruitful, but which also requires a lot of waiting.
And this is true of the Lord our portion, too, isn’t it? Oh, not the bit about working. There is nothing we can do to alter or change God—He is not subject to our whims. But the part about waiting patiently, about receiving what we need to live in the right and proper time—yes, that is how the Lord is to us. He takes care of us. He gives us the fruit of His patience, forgiveness, mercy, and love. We may have to wait for His salvation, but it will come in its proper time. Jeremiah knew it. And we know it, because we live in the days when Jesus has already come—when God’s greatest promises have been fulfilled.
So even today, the Lord is our inheritance. Jesus belongs to us and we belong to Him. How wonderful! What better life could we have? Even when we suffer, we know that He is right there with us, holding us up, strengthening and comforting us, calling us to Him for help and hope. He is our portion and we are His—the portion He claimed through His own suffering, death, and resurrection.
Prayer: Thank You, Lord, that we are Your portion and You are ours. Let us never be separated from You. Amen.
This Daily Devotion was written by Dr. Kari Vo.
Reprinted with permission from Lutheran Hour Ministries
1. Do you have anything, small or large, that you inherited? What is it?
2. Do you have any experience with taking care of something—land, a home, animals, people—where you feel that it or they belong to you and vice versa?
3. What does it mean to you, that Jesus is your inheritance?