Today’s Tasting: Nehemiah 11-13; Psalms 126
Nehemiah was concerned because Jerusalem was so thinly populated that if they got attacked, they couldn’t defend themselves. In an effort to repopulate the city, lots were drawn so that 1 out of every 10 people in the villages and towns would be sent to live in the city. As the city grew, it didn’t take long for corruption to take over and when Nehemiah returned from Babylon he was angry at all that happened. The Levite Priests were having to work in the fields because the people had quit carrying for them with their tithes, there were merchants selling their goods on the Sabbath, and the Jews were once again marrying Ashdod, Ammon, and Moab women. Nehemiah went to great lengths to correct all the wrongs that were being done, sparing none. Chronologically, Nehemiah is the last book of the Old Testament so it is only fitting that at the end of the last chapter, he is praying to God for grace.
Psalms 126 is for the most part, a celebratory hymn about the Israelites being able to return to Jerusalem after 70 years of exile. Even the gentiles recognized what the Lord had done for them. However, the Jewish people realized they would be faced with trials and hard times as they are returning with nothing. Regardless of the hardships they were facing, they rejoiced in knowing that if they made sacrifices now, they would reap the rewards later.
Have you ever had to do something you dreaded, to get to something you loved? Has the task at hand seemed so unconquerable that you wondered whether you would be able to complete it?
Imagine how you would feel if you were the Israelites who were so very excited to be returning home, yet they were poor and had very little food; and to top it all off, what little they did have they would have to use to plant a harvest and then wait for the crops to grow in the hopes they would have plenty to eat and replant later on.
What if we applied this to spiritual growth? In the beginning of our journey we may not have a whole lot of faith to share. Yet, if we can manage to share what we have we will discover that not only will ours grow, but we will help other people’s faith grow as well and we will all be rejoicing!!
I would like to encourage you to share your faith with someone else. There are many ways in which this can be done… maybe you volunteer for the needy… or teach a newcomers Bible Study class… or visit someone in your neighborhood who is struggling or lonely… or maybe, you can share your faith just by being you and allowing the light of Christ to shine through you in all that do.
How do you share your faith?
Tomorrow’s Delight: Malachi
Hugs & Blessings,