I had just read this morning Jeremiah the 2nd chapter. This stuck out to me Jer 2:8 "...walked after things that do not profit." and verse 13 "... hewed them out cisterns, broken cisterns, that can hold no water." There is a need to walk after what God directs us to, otherwise there is no profit. As the scripture says, unless the Lord build the house, we build in vain. We need to be workers together with God not for Him. For Him would mean we're doing things for Him but not under His direction. The Bibles says our own righteousness is as filthy rags. Only what He does through us is worth anything.
Then this was the devotion from TGIF today. I love how God pulls in thoughts from different resources to fit into the puzzle of the message He is presenting to us.
Discerning the Work of God
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Wednesday, March 18 2009
"Remember Tobiah and Sanballat, O my God, because of what they have done; remember also the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who have been trying to intimidate me." - Nehemiah 6:14
Nehemiah set out to rebuild the wall at Jerusalem that had been destroyed. Nehemiah held a position in the Persian Empire that would be comparable to Chief of Staff in our government. Nehemiah wept over the destruction of the city wall and repented for the sins of his generation and the generations before him that had led to the fall of Jerusalem. Nehemiah responded to the news by seeking approval from his superior to take time off to rebuild the wall. Tobiah and Sanballat met Nehemiah's action with resistance, as did Noadiah the prophetess and other prophets. These were the religious and political leaders of his day. They became distractions to his work and opposed him.
Whenever God does a new work, it is often met with resistance by those in the established religious community, and sometimes among those from whom we would expect support. Jesus met the same resistance when He began His public ministry. This same phenomenon happens today. When God begins a new work that cannot be easily explained based upon prior experiences, many make the mistake of assuming it not to be of God. The very people who should embrace and encourage the work become the source of skepticism and opposition. God tells us that His ways are not our ways. He does things in ways beyond our limited understanding.
Before you are tempted to criticize or oppose something that looks different from your past experience, ask God for wisdom and discernment. Examine why you might be tempted to oppose it. The Lord cannot be put in a box. He delights in doing things in ways that may not fit our former paradigms.