Whoever returns to God can be assured of great blessings. For example, many know Jesus' story of the prodigal son who returns to his father (Luke 15:20-24). God is looking forward to the return of a prodigal son. In the Old Testament we read about the return of the people of Israel, God's joy about them returning, and the blessings that followed.
Jeremiah 29:10-13 (NIV)
Israel is stubborn and does not listen to God. For this reason, God allows the people to be led away by a foreign king to the foreign country, Babel. In this Bible passage, we see that God told beforehand that after seventy years the people would return.
“And I will listen to you”, says the Lord. This doesn’t mean that God hasn’t listened to them in the past 70 years. It means that Israel finally turns to the Lord. The people will repent, they will call on the Lord and the Lord will listen.
There is always a way back to God. Even if we have made it impossible for ourselves to return. God will make a way. Of course Israel couldn’t just walk away from Babylon. But God had done great miracles, so they could leave with the permission of the king, their bags filled with riches.
Now God has opened the way for us to return to Him. That way is Jesus Christ. He suffered on the cross and died for our sins, and now it has become possible for everyone to return to God (see John 14:6).
God gives happiness and hope to those who return to God - two things that are very scarce in our world. In another translation the word “peace” is used instead of happiness. Therefore, returning to God has everything to do with our eternal future.
The happiness that God gives is not temporary. Happiness in the world is; it is fragile and can be easily taken away. Happiness, peace and hope that come from God are permanent. They insure the future. Your future!