Extrapolation is a really cool word. It is, essentially, a way of trying to predict the future based on what has happened to us in the past and is happening in the present. We all use this strategy at some time!  When times are great “extrapolation” gives us hope. When times are tough, especially for a long time, it steals our hope.

During Jeremiah’s time the Babylonians had been threatening Israel for over a decade. Eventually the people were captured and taken to Babylon. God gave them this message.

10 This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfil my good promise to bring you back to this place.

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.

13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

14 I will be found by you,” declares the Lord.

Jeremiah 29

God revealed 3 things to his people:

  1. God has set limits to their tough time. (v.10)
  2. God has a good future planned despite allowing this tough time. (v.11)
  3. God utilises this tough time to transform people (v.12)

Extrapolation is great for evaluating ourselves but not evaluating our God. Good times and tough times are given by God in the right dosages to transform people into kingdom people. Let the Word of God dictate your hopefulness and not your circumstances.

Denis Oliver