Jeremiah 13:11 ‘For as the sash clings to the waist of a man, so I have caused the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah to cling to Me,’ says the LORD, ‘that they may become My people, for renown, for praise, and for glory; but they would not hear.’
When we think of people being clingy, it has negative connotations. These people become an annoyance. They are needy. They weary us. But God CAUSED His people to cling to Him, tightly, as a sash tied about the waist. And it is because of this nearness, this needy clinging, that His people would bring renown, praise and glory to God. No other people had a god that delighted in their nearness and their sincerity of worship. Pagan gods required what you could give them and had no interest in their devotees. They did not care about your fears, concerns or needs and could do nothing to help. Bring your offering and then go about your life. But Yahweh wanted to BE their life. He want to be our life. He wants us close, clinging, loving Him and receiving His love. He wants to lead us into the path of an obedient life because that is where our true joy and prosperity is found. When we refuse to cling to Him we become like the sash that was no longer on the waist but hidden away, ruined and profitable for nothing.
Ironically, the place where Jeremiah hid the sash, the Euphrates, means fruitfulness. We think that it is our fruitfulness that brings glory and praise to Him, but often it brings glory and praise to us. Apart from nearness to Him, even fruitfulness is vanity.