30 / 30 Challenge ~ Ezra 7 – 8

30:30Challenge

BEFORE YOU GET STARTED WITH OUR 30 /30, I WANTED TO LET ANY OF YOU WHO ARE WRITERS KNOW THAT I’M OVER AT SOUTHERN WRITER’S MAGAZINE WITH AN ARTICLE THAT I HOPE WILL ENCOURAGE YOU IN YOUR WRITING VENTURES! POP OVER AND COMMENT AND LET ME KNOW IF IT HELPS! 😉

NOW….HERE WE GO!

It’s day 4, sweet friends and I hope you’re enjoying your time in the Word and in prayer! One of the things that amazes me about God is that He actually speaks to us! It may not be audible, but it is just as real as if it were.

This 30 / 30 Challenge is a time that we can all be still before God, treasure our time in the Word and in prayer and tilt our hearts toward heaven, and like Samuel say, SPEAK LORD, FOR YOUR SERVANT HEARS!

SO, grab your journal or download your free tool by clicking on the link (Journal Your Way through the Word) and go get your 30!

MY TIME:

Wow! I got so much out of these two chapters! LOVED the truths that are tucked in these power-packed passages. How about you? So, I’m going to hone in on some verses here and share a bit about them because if I don’t, I will end up writing a book about today’s reading! 😉

Ezra 7:6 ~ “this Ezra came up from Babylon; and he was a skilled scribe in the Law of Moses, which theLord God of Israel had given. The king granted him all his request, according to the hand of the Lord his God upon him.”

1. Ezra was one who came from captivity, yet he was a SKILLED SCRIBE in the Law of Moses. That means his difficult time in the desert of captivity was not wasted time. He spent his days with his heart planted in the Word, developing his understanding of Scripture and strengthening his ability to convey it well.

Sometimes, we waster our time in the wilderness of waiting. But Ezra gives us a great example of how we have an option while we are walking through a difficult time or a time of silence. We can use it to deepen our level of understanding of the Word and our knowledge of God or we can waste our wait on complaining and feeling sorry for ourselves. It’s obvious what Ezra chose. I want to be like Ezra…SKILLED in the WORD, KNOWLEDGABLE ABOUT GOD AND THE THINGS OF GOD, not only mentally, but experientially! How about you?

2. God moved on the kings heart to give him everything he requested. WHO GETS THAT? EVERYTHING they request? Only those who have the obvious hand of God on them. Perhaps in his well-spent time in captivity, he not only garnered a deeper understanding of God and His Word, but he also nurtured His relationship with God as he learned to boldly live his life out loud for the Lord. Whatever he did, it was obvious to all around that God’s hand was upon him. 

And I couldn’t help but wonder is the same true for me? Can the same be said about me? What do I need to do to let the same be true for me? How about you?

Ezra 7:10-26 ~ Ezra’s attempt to approach the king was preceded by some very intentional time at the throne of the King of kings. He sought the Lord. He prepared his heart to seek God’s Word. He LIVED OUT the Word and he TAUGHT the Word. And the king’s response to Ezra was miraculously FOR the children of Israel.

1. The way I live my life, the relationships I have, the favor I seek from those who are in a god-given position to extend benefits and blessings…all of that should extend from my relationship with the Lord and be preceded by my own passionate pursuit of not only KNOWI NG God’s Word, but DOING it and TEACHING IT, as well.

2. The king’s decree was very PRO-ISRAEL and very much a confirmation that God was with Ezra and His people. And the government was very much involved in working with and providing for God’s people because they knew that the nation whose God is God will be blessed. Very different than what we see in America today with the misguided thought that separation of church and state is actually in the Constitution. It’s really not. It’s freedom of religion…not freedom from religion. What an amazing revival our country would experience if we turned back to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob! Just sayin’! (And yes…I know…I’m going to get emails on that one! It’s okay.)

Ezra 8:21-23 ~ Ezra proclaimed a fast before they began their journey. The fast was specifically for 5 specific things.

  • Humble themselves
  • God’s will for them
  • God’s will for their children
  • God’s will for their possessions
  • God’s hand upon them so they didn’t have to ask others to help when they had publicly proclaimed that God was on their side

I was reminded that when we fast, we are to be specific as to why. Not just a random individual or joint fast, but a very specific and intentional fast on purpose and for a purpose.

Do you fast to humble yourself? To know God’s will? For God’s will for your children? For God’s will for your possessions? For God to show up in such a way that His favor is evident in your life?

Throughout today’s reading we find Ezra say, “The hand of our God was upon us (Ezra 7:6,9,28 & Ezra 8:18,22,31). As New Testament believers, that is true. 1 John 2:20 tells us that we have an anointing (God’s favor) on us as believers. The question is, do we walk in it? Do we wisely use our wilderness waiting time to draw closer to God, to know Him and His Word more? Do we DO what His Word says and TEACH what His Word says? Do we fast and pray and humble ourselves before God?

QUESTION: HOW HAS GOD SPOKEN TO YOU THROUGH EZRA 7 – 8?

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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/.

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