Day 32 Thursday, Mar. 26th
15 So the wall was finished on the twenty-fifth day of the month Elul, in fifty-two days. 16 And when all our enemies heard of it, all the nations around us were afraid and fell greatly in their own esteem; for they perceived that this work had been accomplished with the help of our God.
MILESTONES AND MILLSTONES
Jerusalem has reached a major milestone in its rebuilding efforts. It is day fifty-two, and the walls have been restored. I can imagine the people of Jerusalem standing inside marveling at the accomplishments the Lord has worked through them. I can also imagine the enemies peering at the wall from the outside and feeling their own defeat. For some reason, Jerusalem's progress was perceived by outsiders as a millstone tied around one's ankle or one's throat. Somehow they equate Jerusalem's profit with their loss, Jerusalem's progress with their set back, and Jerusalem's favor from God with the Lord frowning on them.
As I reflect on today’s text, I recognize how much our perceptions and the way in which we view our circumstances and those of others, impacts our sense of self-esteem. Too often we, as believers in Christ, act as if God's blessings will not reach us if the Lord has already blessed someone else. We perceive their progress and their milestones as millstones in our lives that are holding us back and preventing us from realizing the fullness of the Lord’s purpose for our lives. Step back and look at what the Lord has already done for you. See and celebrate the changes God has already brought to pass. Then, see and celebrate what the Lord is doing in the lives of others. God's work in the world is simply an indicator that the Lord yet lives and is in the blessing business. God has a plan that will not merely build up some of us, but has the capacity to restore us all.
Connect with a friend, and discuss a time when you felt overlooked or passed over by God when it came to receiving a blessing.
- What prompted or was the basis for your feelings?
- Did you ever come to see the experience differently, more positively?
- How do you now respond when you recognize the Lord at work in the life of another?
LET US PRAY
Lord God, you are God alone. No one can comprehend your greatness. As you rest, rule and abide over me and in me, help me to trust in your wisdom which cannot fail.