30 / 30 Challenge ~ Ezra 3 – 4

30:30Challenge

 

Welcome back to our second day in the our 30 / 30 Challenge together!

I’m so excited to be in the Word with you as we all commit to spending 30 minutes with the Lord in His Word and in prayer for 30 days. And there’s nothing like basking in His presence and pressing into the Lord!

He really is SO WONDER-full and I absolutely LOVE how HE LOVES US!

If you are journaling your way through the Word and using my FREE downloadable, click this link: Journal Your Way through the Word

MY TIME:

I loved reading Ezra 3:1…especially the second half: “the people gathered together as one man to Jerusalem.”

Isn’t that what the church of the Living God is supposed to look like, act like, be like?

ONE MAN!

ONE BODY!

UNITED for the cause of Christ! To glorify Jesus! To work together to impact our communities and our culture for the Lord Jesus Christ!

Yes… to be a people who gather together as ONE MAN!

Ezra 2 just gave us a list of how many people that were gathered together.

A lot of people with distinct personalities, in different seasons of their lives, with different challenges, hurts, heartaches, callings and passions.

Yet, they gathered together as ONE MAN!

Ezra 3 goes on to tell us how they worshipped together. They offered sacrifices, the appointed feasts, they gave money to the Temple building fund, the provided finances for those who labored at the Temple, the pitched in and worked together using their talents and abilities, they played music and son songs of praise and worship, they shouted with great joy, they wept with joy. They worshipped loud!

Sounds a lot like the church gathering together for worship doesn’t it? Or at least what it should sound like! What does worship look like to you? Are you afraid to cry in front of others? Afraid to sing loudly or think the younger crowd’s music is too loud?

In Ezra 3:12-13 the worship was so loud, the people couldn’t tell the difference between the shouting and the weeping and it was heard afar off.

I can’t help but wonder why we cheer so loudly for a football game but stand silent in the church when we are singing about the Lord. Why is it that when our favorite team scores a goal, hits a home run or kicks a goal, we stand to our feet and yell so loud the neighbors can hear, but when we worship the Lord we are afraid to draw attention to ourselves.

I realize people worship differently, but what if we weren’t afraid of what others thought? What if we discarded traditional teachings that aren’t rooted in Scripture and just loved on the LORD out loud as we worshipped Him in Spirit and in truth?

It might get loud. It might be silent. But it would be much more sincere than three hymns and 30 minute message that doesn’t cause our hearts to swell with joy and that doesn’t overwhelm us with the beauty and wonder of knowing God.

In Ezra 4, we find what we always find when someone starts taking ground for God’s glory. Opposition. Verse 4 says, “The the people of the land tried to discourage the people of Judah. They troubled them in building, and hired counselors against them to frustrate their purpsoe all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia.”

It’s no surprise that when God’s people are committed to God’s work for God’s glory, the enemy of our souls will raise up his ugly head. It happened in Ezra’s day and it happens today. 

Our culture and our country is inundated with those who would thwart our every attempt to reach people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They call our good, evil and stand in direct opposition to not only us, but to the Lord. 

The front lines of the Christian life is not for the faint of heart. And it’s not a battle we should try to fight on our own. We need the Lord to fight the battle for us and we need each other to link hearts and hands so that we can help strengthen one another in the fight, to encourage one another to keep on keepin’ on for Jesus and to relentlessly continue the work.

No matter what comes against us. No matter if the world goes to the extreme of hiring others to go against us. This one thing remains true. God is God and He will not be defeated. And He alone is worth living and dying for!

So, dig in, sweet friends. Link hearts and hands and worship and serve the Living God together. And when opposition comes (and it will), be so strongly united that you will not be defeated. If God is for you, who can be against you?

Yeah…He is worth is all!

QUESTION: DO YOU NEED A LITTLE FIRE IN YOUR WORSHIP? HOW ABOUT IN YOUR SERVICE? DO YOU HAVE A BROTHER OR SISTER IN CHRIST THAT YOU NEED TO RECONCILE WITH?

TODAY IS THE DAY TO GATHER TOGETHER AS ONE MAN TO SERVE THE LORD!

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If you’d like to know more about how you can help change the world one mom at a time by beginning a M.O.M. Mentor Group, visit The M.O.M. Initiative at http://www.themominitiative.com/join-here/.

If you are interested in having me come speak at your next event, or share a message about mentoring, how you can begin a M.O.M. Mentor Group or one of my other speaking topics, please feel free to contact me by clicking this link.

One Comment

  1. Wonderful new series, Stephanie! Thank you!

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