Friday, June 10, 2011

"Hey, Don't Make Me Come Over There!"

Nehemiah 4:2  "Sanballat was very angry.....saying in front of his friends and the Samaritan army officers, "What does this bunch of poor, feeble Jews think they are doing?  Do they think they can build the wall in a day if they offer enough sacrifices?"
I feel like I'm at school watching some bully on the playground...who acts real tough when he's in front of his friends...but when Sanballat starts with the "Do they think they can build the wall in a day if they offer enough sacrifices?....I took a step back...just incase a lightening bolt comes down from heaven...The things we say when we are angry...oy vey!  Then Tobiah adds That stone wall would collapse if even a fox walked along the top of it!"  Sanballat might have his friends...but Nehemiah and the Jews have their GOD! And so do we.

Now, we can't control what people say to us or about us...but we can control how we respond...and that's a key message in this chapter.  This is a spiritual battle and the battle belongs to the LORD.  The enemy wants us to respond in the flesh, but God wants us to respond in the spirit.  Nehemiah refuses to take the bait.   Instead of getting into a conversation with the enemy, Nehemiah turns and prays to God:  
"Hear us, O God, for we are being mocked."  

Nehemiah could have chosen to respond differently:  "Hey, don't make me come over there!"  Or, "Guys, can't we all just get along?"  But he chose to pray...and I wonder if  Proverbs 9:7-8 came to Nehemiah's mind as he prayed?  "Whoever corrects a mocker invites insult; whoever rebukes a wicked man incurs abuse. Do not rebuke a mocker or he will hate you;  rebuke a wise man and 
he will love you."  This we do know...God heard those prayers, answered each Nehemiah wisdom on how to respond every time and He will do the same for us.

Father, help me to remember that yo have not called me to fight all the evils of this world.  You are my commander, and you lead the battle.   Help me to be like Nehemiah and always go to you first.  Keep me awake and watchful, never letting my guard down, for my enemy, the devil, never rests.  In Jesus name, amen.

Standing in Him,

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

"Working on the Wall or Four Walls?"

Nehemiah 3:12  "Shallum son of Hallohesh and his daughters repaired the next section.   He was the leader of the other half of the district of Jerusalem."

The only women mentioned in this section were the daughters of Shallum.  I been on some of the churches missions trip and not all are trained professionals, like me for instance.  Most of us learn on the we go. Last year I learned to apply drywall mud and sinking drywall screws....something I had never done before.  Those working on the wall here in Jerusalem weren't construction workers either.  But they rolled up their sleeves and jumped in, willing to do whatever they could.  By the way, on our church missions trips...the men do all the cooking and
they...jump right in there and clean without begin ask!  And like those we are reading about today, they are leaders in our church and in the work place...such servants hearts and what a great example!  

For us today, we women want to be out there "working on the wall" too...but, sometimes God has us at home working within four walls instead.  But this isn't forever....we will go through different seasons of life where serving outside the home isn't always possible.   Especially when our children are small and then again when they hit Jr High and High School (at least for me).   How much we serve will depend on the needs of our family and the ability the LORD gives us.  I know some women that I am amazed at their capacity to do soooo much...I use to always say...they come from good stock.  Physically strong!  But then I realized...God had called them to it and gave them the strength to do all that they Him be the glory!

Our first calling is to the LORD... worshiping Him, praying (listening/speaking to Him), studying and meditating on His Word.  After that, as women, we are called to be keepers of the home...taking care of our family first and foremost....which is a high calling/high privilege.  Raising our family...the way we should...takes tons of time, to do it the right way.   If we have any time left...then we serve outside our home...and this time factor changes with the seasons of our lives.   

I also found that the enemy of our souls want us as wives and mothers to be distracted from our home and the important work we have there.   He uses good things like ministry to draw us away... so we are ineffective as a wife and mother.  But God doesn't just want us to choose good things to do for Him...He wants us to choose the BEST things ...which is walking according to His will for us.

I found that during those seasons that I was home with my children...that PRAYER became my primary ministry...which should be at every season of life.  My heart wanted to be in Thailand and Africa.  I didn't go there physically...but I prayed and went there spiritually instead.  What I thought was a time of me being placed on a shelf...became a huge blessing in my life  and a preparation for the future for me and my family.   When I get to heaven,  I will be able to see all that those prayers accomplished..and not only that,  I learned later...I will receive a reward as  1 Samuel 30:24b tells us  "The share of the man/women who stayed with the supplies is to be the same as that of him who went down to the battle.  All will share alike. "  Not everyone can go into battle or "build the wall"...someone has to stay back and take care of things at home so others can go...but we all share in the reward for our part.

You might be in the home, working "within four walls", or you might be one of those that are "outside on the wall"...either it all for God's glory.  "Let the beauty of the LORD our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands for us; yes, establish the work of our hands"  Psalm 90:17

Blessings on your day,