Tag Archives: Job

Wall inspection

It doesn’t take long for physical things to begin to wear down if they are not properly maintained.

It’s an even faster decline if it’s purposefully attacked and broken down.

The book of Nehemiah chronicles the enormous task of bringing order to a broken and defenseless city.

Jerusalem had been laid waste.

Which God allowed due to the stubborn refusal of the people.

(The book of Jeremiah is one of the places which tells this heartbreaking story.)

The Lord sent many prophets to warn them, many chances to turn to Him and serve Him only.

But they had refused and chosen judgement and thus their city was left broken.

The wall, which was the best defensive protection, lay in ruins.

The people had returned to the land from captivity to rebuild the temple.

Ezra 1:1-2NKJV — Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the LORD stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying, Thus says Cyrus king of Persia: All the kingdoms of the earth the LORD God of heaven has given me. And He has commanded me to build Him a house at Jerusalem which is in Judah.

They encountered a great deal of opposition to this, but they did eventually get it done.

Yet, many years later the wall was still broken and the gates were unusable.

Nehemiah 1:2-3 NKJV — that Hanani one of my brethren came with men from Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped, who had survived the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem.
And they said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province are there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem is also broken down, and its gates are burned with fire.”

God sent Nehemiah to rebuild the wall.

Nehemiah 2:17 NKJV — Then I said to them, “You see the distress that we are in, how Jerusalem lies waste, and its gates are burned with fire. Come and let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer be a reproach.”

It was a difficult task.

The odds were completely against them and their enemies threatened them continually.

Nehemiah 4:16 NKJV — So it was, from that time on, that half of my servants worked at construction, while the other half held the spears, the shields, the bows, and wore armor; and the leaders were behind all the house of Judah.

Yet, God was with them and the task was completed.

Nehemiah 7:1 NKJV — Then it was, when the wall was built and I had hung the doors, when the gatekeepers, the singers, and the Levites had been appointed,

Once the walls were rebuilt Nehemiah set up honorable people to organize and coordinate the city and to maintain it.

Nehemiah 7:2 NKJV — that I gave the charge of Jerusalem to my brother Hanani, and Hananiah the leader of the citadel, for he was a faithful man and feared God more than many.

After all this, the Word of God was brought out and the people were instructed.

Nehemiah 8:1-2 NKJV — Now all the people gathered together as one man in the open square that was in front of the Water Gate; and they told Ezra the scribe to bring the Book of the Law of Moses, which the LORD had commanded Israel. So Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly of men and women and all who could hear with understanding on the first day of the seventh month.

The book goes on to chronicle how Nehemiah deals with sin amongst the people, especially the leaders.

There are numerous applications for the follower of Christ within this book.

The book of Nehemiah starts with the knowledge of the condition of the wall.

It was broken down and the gates were burned.

What is the status of our wall?

Not a physical structure, but a spiritual one.

Job shows us what a spiritual wall looks like.

Job 1:5 NKJV — So it was, when the days of feasting had run their course, that Job would send and sanctify them, and he would rise early in the morning and offer burnt offerings according to the number of them all. For Job said, “It may be that my sons have sinned and cursed God in their hearts.” Thus Job did regularly.

Job prayed and offered sacrifices for his children, incase one of them had sinned.

He did it often, it was a habit.

Job’s spiritual wall was an outgrowth of his personal walk with the Lord.

Job 1:1 NKJV — There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God and shunned evil.

Job understood the importance of covering his family in prayer.

The enemy also understood the spiritual wall God had placed around Job.

Job 1:9-10 NKJV — So Satan answered the LORD and said, “Does Job fear God for nothing? Have You not made a hedge around him, around his household, and around all that he has on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land.”

One might argue that Job’s spiritual wall wasn’t good enough when his life turns upsidedown due to the enemy being allowed to touch his wealth, his family, and his health.

But these things do not occur because Job sinned.

They are a test of Job’s character.

The end of the book of Job reveals the difference, God restores everything more than before and Job’s integrity remains intact.

Spiritual protection doesn’t mean everything will always be “good”.

It means we are secure in knowing everything is in God, not a consequence of sin.

For sin harms us and our families, which is why God teaches us so much about it and warns us to avoid it.

Through Jesus Christ we have the opportunity to live free from sin and upright before God.

We also have a responsibility to build boundaries and fortify ourselves and our families against evil.

We too can maintain our spiritual wall through prayer and living upright before the Lord.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Lord, thank You for Nehemiah and Job and the lessons we can glean from their lives. Lord, please continue to teach me how to maintain a spiritual wall. Lord, I do not want to be defenseless against sin or the enemy because I have neglected my walk with You in any place. Lord, please show me my weaknesses that I might confess them and turn to You. Lord, my family is Yours and I trust You with them. Please help me to pray fervently for them with wisdom. Lord, please grant me discernment as I stand in prayer for each one. Lord, thank You for Your Word, Your love, Your truth. It is such a joy to put my trust in You! Amen.

Planting…

What crop do you want?

Scripture makes it clear, we choose the produce by the seeds we plant.

Job 4:8 NKJV — Even as I have seen, Those who plow iniquity And sow trouble reap the same.

Life isn’t a vending machine, where you put in your money, press a button, and get out whatever you want.

Instead, it is a continual choice and in the choosing is where the seeds are planted.

Following the Lord is costly, but it holds enormous promise.

Psalm 126:5 NKJV — Those who sow in tears Shall reap in joy.

No amount of sacrifice can compare to the joy of eternity.

Hosea 10:12 NKJV — Sow for yourselves righteousness; Reap in mercy; Break up your fallow ground, For it is time to seek the LORD, Till He comes and rains righteousness on you.

What joy and gladness to know we can choose today to plant seeds for tomorrow!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for Your truth. Please continue to teach me what to do each day, as I want to sow seeds of righteousness. Lord, only in You can I find wisdom and truth. Only in You can I understand how to walk correctly. I want righteousness to rain down upon me and my family. Please help me to plant honorably. I love You, Jesus. Amen.

A letter

My dear friend,

I wanted to write to you and let you know what God has been teaching me.

I’m also praying for you, as I don’t know all you are going through, but Jesus does.

Uncertain times can bring fear and doubt, but for those of us who know Jesus, it is a place of surrender.

Which is where we should live as believers.

In fact, surrender is a pleasure, because it frees us of thinking we are in charge or that we have to do or must be whatever.

With total surrender we get to wait upon the Lord in peace.

To walk forward in Him and not worry.

It’s what Paul said:

Philippians 4:11-14 NKJV — Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content: I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Paul had learned the practice of daily surrender and he knew there was nothing that he could not endure, because Christ was his Master and through him he could walk whether hungry or full.

Too often, especially in our culture, we think we “have to do…”.

Yet, it is only true if we were given the task by God.

Him and His Word is what we must obey and listen to, not our flesh, not our family, not our neighbors.

At least not any of those before we listen to God and His Word. (We should always check what we “heard” to make sure it aligns with scripture. God doesn’t contradict Himself.)

We must have a teachable spirit, because often God will guide and direct us through the voices of others, but that’s why our relationship with the Lord and studying His word must come first.

Only with a heart completely surrendered before God can we truly hear those around us.

Life was not given for us to live unto our selfish desires.

Nor to achieve our own made-up priorities.

Life was given as a gift, but we should give it back.

Sin has marred the heart so much that we can never find true life without first giving ourselves to God completely, without even a piece left out.

True surrender means Job:

Job 1:21 NKJV — And he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD.”

This is surrender.

Job understood all that had been trusted to his care was not his and could be removed at any time.

His life was not his position, family, experience, nor his stuff.

His life was God’s and he would praise him no matter the circumstances.

That is where true joy is.

In finding that one can truly praise God no matter what is occurring.

That I can trust Him no matter the obstacle or the emotion.

There is nothing to despair, because my Savior lives!

There’s nothing I need to prove to others, because my Savior lives!

What does man think of me? It doesn’t matter.

My Savior lives!

What blessed joy!

What grand design!

How great is our God!

May God bless and keep you my friend,

Love, Hope

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for Your love! Thank You for salvation! How grateful I am to You for Your gift of friendship to me. I’m so blessed to have such wonderful friends and family who love me as they do. Lord, please lift up my friend and bring them to a place of rest and trust in You. Heal their heart of past hurts and restore them to faith in You. Lord, let them see themselves and others as You do. Let them walk with understanding and truth. Lord, please open the scriptures to them, that they might find the Way. Let their hearts find peace in surrender. Let them put all their trust in You. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.

…My Redeemer lives…

For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth;
Job 19:25 NKJV

The truth if these words should be enough to carry any child of God through anything.

Job’s words are not spoken lightly.

Nor is he speaking from a place of comfort and security.

His heart is in anguish.

I call my servant, but he gives no answer; I beg him with my mouth. My breath is offensive to my wife, And I am repulsive to the children of my own body. Even young children despise me; I arise, and they speak against me. All my close friends abhor me, And those whom I love have turned against me.
Job 19:16‭-‬19 NKJV

These words are but a small measure of the depth of Job’s sorrow.

And who can blame him?

His children have all been killed on the same day.

Every part of his finances have been stripped away on that same day.

As if these things were not enough, his body is struck by painful boils from head to foot.

His wife is anything but comforting or understanding.

Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!”
Job 2:9 NKJV

Yes, anyone can see Job is suffering in the deepest of ways.

So, there is such testimony in his words of his anguish.

In the middle of him listing off all those who no longer love or respect him he speaks words of such truth.

Words every believer can cling to no matter the season or circumstance.

“For I know that my Redeemer lives,..” Job 19:25a

Our Redeemer is Jesus Christ.

He paid the price for sin, all sin, when He died on the cross.

And He rose again!

Truly, knowing our Redeemer lives, is the very deepest part of a Christian’s faith.

Without Jesus, there’s simply ritual.

It is a personal relationship daily with our Redeemer that breathes life everlasting into our soul.

…”And He shall stand at last on the earth;”
Job 19:25b NKJV

Let us never forget this.

Jesus is coming back.

He promised to return for His bride, the Church, and He will.

No matter what our daily activities, we must never weary of looking for the return of our Savior.

Truly, those who are called by His name can say:

For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth;
Job 19:25 NKJV

In fact, let us say it often.

Let’s remind one another of this truth.

Let us hold fast to our integrity like Job did, that when the Master returns, He shall find us waiting for Him.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for these truths. Thank You for the teaching we can glean from Job. Thank You for shining Your truth through scripture to our hearts and minds. Thank You for always walking with us, through each circumstance. Lord, humbly, I request, that you make me like Job. A person of integrity, who holds fast to what is right, one who doesn’t waver in their faith no matter the cost. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.

August 23rd

Each day, I read God’s Word and pray.

This is today’s.

For I know that my Redeemer lives, And He shall stand at last on the earth;
Job 19:25 NKJV

Dear Lord Jesus,

Nothing in all the Earth compares to this. You are my Redeemer, and the One Who saves my soul. One day You will return for Your Bride. How I long for that day! Lord Jesus, purify my heart, cleanse me completely that I might be ready to honor You today. Lord, cause me to continually turn to You and Your Word in all areas, in every part. Lord Jesus, I want to be held by Your truth, filled by Your Holy Spirit, and be a Christ follower, one who picks up and carries their cross daily and with joy. Lord, I lay my plans, my ideas, and my desires before You. I trust You to speak through Your Word to my heart and mind, to provide for all my needs, to guide and direct all my steps. In days of uncertainty, may I cling to You. In days of pain, may I rejoice in Your salvation. In days of joy, may I praise You continually. Lord, Your ways are best, Your love is pure, You are the Redeemer. Thank You. Amen.