In the Bible, Nehemiah rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem in a short time, hung the doors / gates for these walls & provided essential leadership to a broken & despondent people (those left behind from the exile who had been injured, suffered massive trauma & displaced). Nehemiah has big achievements in his life & we would be wise to apply some lessons to our lives from his achievements.
Here are a few things to consider:
Obstacles: nothing big is achieved without overcoming obstacles. And sometimes the biggest obstacles are in our thoughts & outlook
Opposition: people opposed Nehemiah & people will oppose you. What you do with such opposition is frequently more important than the opposition itself
Focus: Nehemiah didn’t let obstacles, opposition nor hardship distract him from achieving his goal to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. Stay on target!
I desperately want to be led by the Holy Spirit, in every area of my life – my decisions, conversations, priorities, relationships, etc. If I’m honest, however, sometimes I’m more driven than directed.
For me, here are some key indicators that I’m being flesh driven rather than Spirit led:
my flesh tends to dictate my actions.
my perspective gets very self-absorbed.
I can be more results oriented than relationship attentive – achievements become more important than connecting with people.
Fear often dilutes any expression of genuine love from me.
I become more consumer minded rather than thinking how to be generous.
Let’s be careful that we stay in Step with the Spirit & not controlled by our flesh 🙂
Be sure to pre-order my newest book about how to stay In Step with the Holy Spirit!
We all find ourselves in busy seasons, when we have loads of things to do, all of them screaming to be accomplished YESTERDAY!!!!
I’m in one of those seasons this week & I heard a very sweet whisper in my prayer time this morning: “Don’t forget to pray!” This was very encouraging to me because when I get in these massively busy seasons, I tend to put my head down & close my focus to everything except getting stuff done. This sweet whisper was more than a little wonderful reminder to ask for divine Help & to remember that the Holy Spirit is with me all the time as my Helper.
Don’t forget to pray 🙂
I tend to run in the red zone. This means that I try to squeeze the most out of my time, energy, money, talents & attention. Generally, I’ve thought this has been a good way to do life. If a person wants to achieve a lot, suck out the marrow of life & choke on the bone, maybe even burn out, then FULL CHARGE ON!!!
But I’m beginning to see the importance of margin, or breathing room. Margin gives us space to think, recover, listen & be with the Holy Spirit. If you think about it, Adam’s first day of existence was God’s day of rest. Perhaps it’s in the margins & rest where we can experience the deepest intimacy & fellowship with the Holy Spirit, just maybe 🙂
observing the winning exchange between Nikki Hamblin & Abbey D’Agostino in the 500m qualifying race
The Olympics this year have been very incredible in many different ways. As I’ve thought about some of stand-out moments & athletes, I asked myself the questions, “In what way would I want to be an Olympian & not just in an athletic context? How could I be an olympian person in a spiritual context?” As I thought about these questions, I remembered the story of Perpetua, a third century martyr, who died as she said, “stand fast in the faith and love one another.” I applaud the athletic achievements that have marked the Olympics this year, but may our love for Jesus and others be every bit as olympian, with the help of the Holy Spirit!