So Be It. 0 Lord
We use these words, "So be it," or "Amen," at the end of our prayers. They imply a willing acquiescence in whatever the Father has revealed to be His will, combining "Thy will be done" with "I delight to do thy will, 0 my God," and show not only acceptance of the Divine will, but a genuine desire for its accomplishment. To the child of God this expression must represent the theme of the entire life: it must be the opening bar of life's symphony as well as the end. The meaning of the words is beautifully expressed by the life of the prophet who uttered them (Jer. 8.6). He was called upon to perform a task that was distasteful from the natural point of view. He was only a boy when first called upon to speak, "Behold, I cannot speak; for I am a child" (Jer. 1.6), yet this gentle boy had to rebuke a nation and pronounce God's judgment and what was worse, tell the nation to submit to Babylon. Jer. 20.9 shows that he shrank from the storm of bitterness this message aroused. "Then said I, I will not make mention of him nor speak any more in his name. But his word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I was weary with forbearing and I could not stay." In spite of his own inclinations, however, he yielded to the Divine will, although it caused him great grief (Jer. 8.18 and Jer. 9.1-2). He had no alternative but to announce the coming judgment, but there was a sob in his voice as he uttered it. Nothing was further from his heart than to desire the evil day, yet he was so filled with the sense of Divine rectitude, so convinced of God's judgment that he rose above his own inclinations and said, "So be it, 0 Lord" This is the attitude that the child of God must bring to every circumstance of life. Although there may be times when the flesh shrinks, we must accept the Lord's will as inevitable, as did Eli when he said, "it is the Lord, let him do what seems to him good."
We must learn to say "Amen" with cheerful, willing acquiescence to all experiences in life, to every revelation of the truth, to every aspect of Divine judgment. In the words of his Leader (Heb. 10.7), each child of God presents himself at baptism and is counted dead to his own will and alive to the will of God. It is here that accepting the Divine will as revealed in the volume of the book, he says, "So be it, 0 Lord, may thy will be done in me." It is one thing to make this covenant of sacrifice, another thing to carry it out, but day by day the Lord is teaching us His will, and day by day He expects us to say "Amen". Jeremiah went to Anathoth and in chapter 12 we read how, overwhelmed on account of a plot against his life, he poured out his complaint to God. The Divine reply is given in v.5 "If you have raced with men on foot, and they have wearied you, how will you compete with horses? And if in a safe land and you fall down how will you do in the jungle of Jordan?" Thus, the people of God turn to their Father in times of bitterness and trial, saying, "Why must we always be misunderstood and even hated?" The Divine reply is full of gentle rebuke, "Have you not covenanted to do my will; are you already tired?" The writer to the Hebrews says "Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself so that you, may not grow weary or fainthearted" (12.3). God allows us to be tested in a small way at first and faith is gradually strengthened for the more severe tests. Eventually we are enabled to say, "So be it, 0, Lord" at every step. The blessed result of character I development can only be realised by these' experiences if we can say, "Amen, 0 Lord".
Jeremiah was sent to the house of the Potter (Jer.18.1-6). Israel had not responded to the will of the great Potter and they lost the high honour that might have been theirs but they will be made a vessel of less honour. If the design of the Heavenly Potter is to be outworked in our lives, every particle of the clay must say "Amen." It is true that if we mar God's gracious design for us He can, He may, make us again, but it will be a vessel of less honour than it would have been. Let us, then, say "Amen" to~ every moulding and shaping influence He brings into our lives.
Not only must we acquiesce in the experiences I of life, but we must say "Amen" to each unfolding of truth. Even the sincere Nathanael questioned God's method saying, "Can any good thing come out of Nazareth?" Naaman asked "Are there not better rivers in Damascus than all the waters oj Israel? Can I not wash in them and be clean?" He nearly missed the blessing because he did not like the method used.
If the judgment of God seems to us to be harsh. let us make quite sure that we have not misunderstood; then turn to our Father and dare to trust Him and in the strength of that trust say, "Amen, 0 Lord." As we look up into our Father's face let us realise that He will do nothing, He can new and confident tone in the voice of him who has do nothing, but what is, in perfect accord with a come to trust God implicitly and say "Amen - so love which far exceeds our most tender, deepest be it" to all His dealings.