Jeremiah has just bought a plot of land, at God’s direction, even though he knows the besieged city of Jerusalem is about to fall to the enemy. Buying property when you know that you’re about to be taken into captivity in a foreign land seems pretty pointless. Or and act of great faith, that God will someday bring him or his descendents back to the land to reclaim that property.
So Jeremiah prays, reminding himself of God’s greatness, that no matter how powerful the enemy seems and how weak God’s people are, God really is in control. Humanly speaking, it would make more sense to either expect that a powerful God would prevent the enemy of God’s people from defeating them, or else to think that such defeat means that God really isn’t that powerful after all. But Jeremiah recalls the evidence of God’s power as displayed in the history of Israel, and not only in the distant past but up to the current day.
When we look for evidence of God’s power in human affairs, we often think of God protecting His people against external enemies, such as Egypt in the days of Moses or Babylon in the days of Jeremiah. But Jesus points to the power of God to do what might seem even harder – to turn a self-centered sinner into one who loves God and does His will.