August 23, 2010

Purposeful Pursuit

Sitting here quietly this morning I felt a "tug" to write and post the following. 

Are you struggling with the call that God has deposited within you?
Do you find yourself stepping out then stopping?
Do you feel defeated?
Do you feel worn down?

Then these words are for you.

I am also here for you so please feel free to reach out if you would like someone to talk with about the struggle to step out into what you feel God has called you to.  I will also pray for you as well as listen to your heart.

An exhortation from Nehemiah

The walls of the city lay in ruins; stones toppled on stone. A burnt, hollowed out kingdom that has been breached and broken. The few folk that remain are defeated and worn. The thought of re-building pushes against their dried up souls. Feeble and forlorn, all inspiration is beyond their grasp in this grey world of granite stone.

Hope bursts into flame as exiles trickle back into this once glorious nation. It flickers brightly for awhile until it sizzles and dies; the effort too great. With enemies pressing in on every side survival saps every ounce of strength they have. Disheartened and discouraged the citizens sink further into despair.

In a foreign country far away a man is stirred by the opposition and accusation that is now the mainstay of his homeland nation. In great distress this cup-bearer weeps over the reproach of the children of Israel. Four months pass as Nehemiah fasts and prays. He needs divine inspiration and direction from the living God. Nehemiah acknowledges his own fear even as he steps out under God’s leading.

There is much we can learn from the re-building of Jerusalem under Nehemiah’s guidance. Proverbs 25:28 refers to our inner life being like a city and without self-control or spiritual discipline our walls also become broken down.

The enemy of our soul raises his voice to accuse and condemn; an enemy that presses in at the broken down gate. This accuser pummels and pounds as he seeks to grind at the gift that God has bestowed upon each one of us.

As Nehemiah received instruction from God so will we as we seek His face. Inspiration and enthusiasm come in sporadic bursts but in order to be maintained a plan must be developed. Too often we jump into a project that we feel He has called us to without considering the work that needs to be done.

There is effort involved in maintaining the gift that God has given. We are a steward of that gift and the first priority is in recognizing that all inspiration comes from the Giver. The accuser will use fear to paralyze and strangle the calling that God has given.

Nehemiah, the cup bearer, was blocked at every turn and attempt to rebuild that which was broken down. He took each obstacle to God earnestly seeking for direction. He was able to face his fear because he knew the One who commissioned him had also equipped him. Rejection and opposition were taken in prayer to God.

If that gift or calling is being blocked or hindered it could also be seen as God’s whisper that something is awry in our life. It is God’s siren call to come aside for awhile and be refreshed. There are walls that need to be refortified and a gate reset.

Silent resignation to present circumstance is not God’s plan. Purposeful pursuit of the Giver, not the gift, is.

Proverbs 25:28 (NIV)    Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control.


Joan said...

Your heart for God always shines through in your devotions and writings. You help me draw closer to God and I feel His presence and Spirit through your words. You encourage me to draw nearer. May God always lead you to share what he has written on your heart. Bless you Maria.

Maria Egilsson said...

Joan, your words touch me deeply as this has always been my prayer - that my words draw others closer to God. Thank you so much. Maria