Bringing others on the adventure

“I also told them about the gracious hand of my God on me and what the king had said to me. They replied,” Let us start rebuilding.” So they began this good work.’

Nehemiah 2:18

 

I’m sure Nehemiah won people over not by his expertise in city-building, or by his background (these were people living in ruins listening to an Israelite who had been living a cushy life in exile) but by the fact that Nehemiah was walking in God’s footsteps and following God’s plan, with God’s favour on him.

Sharing my inspiration for what I do is key to getting buy-in from others, and also to remind myself it’s not by my own strength.

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I was

‘In the month of Kislev in the twentieth year, while I was in the citadel of Susa, Hanani, one of my brothers, came from Judah with some other men, and I questioned them about the Jewish remnant that had survived the exile, and also about Jerusalem.’

They said to me, “Those who survived the exile and are back in the province areĀ  in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire.”

When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven.

Nehemiah 1:1-4

 

What stirred up in Nehemiah’s heart? Was it because through his brother, he felt kinship with those left behind? Was it because he realised that he had been comfortable and had neglected the possibility of going back? Was it when he dwelt on how Jerusalem had been in its’ days of greatness?

Regardless, it stirred up a deep sadness and emotion in Nehemiah which in turn, spurred him to action. This consisted of: acknowledging who God is (v5), repentance (v6-7), recalling His promises (v8-9), declaring truth into action (v10-11). And the last sentence of the chapter sets the scene for what was to come.

I was the cupbearer to the king.

I was the research fellow in a world-renowned renal unit.

 

Off on an adventure

Recently revisited my outlook on things and priorities in life in general. To me, life for the past 2 years has been in a bit of a rut of going back and forth, always intending to move forward and with the best intentions, regressing to the past often and taking manageable steps where I can

BUT

What happened to the life of an adventurer, seeking the divine purpose and calling while living out a life wholly surrendered to the One who gave His life for mine?

What became of the dreamer who dreamt about a career in medical missions, serving the poor in far-flung countries, combining both medical and surgical skills with a creativity learnt over years of being immersed in a new culture and people group?

What happened to the person who had the words spoken over him intimating that he would be the conduit for the gospel truth to reach an unreachable situation/place while being ‘undercover for God’?

Where is the truth of the words of Joshua 2:5-6 in my life (‘No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their ancestors to give them.“)?

Lord, fall afresh on me as I seek to find more of You and bring Your truth and reality where I am.

 

 

Swimming

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To know there’s a vast universe out there. Full of unexplored potential. Who knows what we might find, once we start looking.

The depth scares some away. The darkness hiding untold dangers and the possibility of no return to the surface is a deal breaker. No adventure today. Better to not have risked and discovered than possibility of injury and failure.

But for the brave few that step out of the boat and venture into the depths, what their eyes see cannot be conveyed back in a mere written or visual representation. And what often leads them to return again and again, probing ever deeper.

 

 

I have resolved

And a decision made is only equaled by the effort in keeping it.

To not look back, or venture where I’ve been, to not allow my thoughts or my heart to drift into old ways without permission from both parties, and to also not stay stationary, but to plunge forward despite what is happening on either side.

 

While in the secure upstairs room where the disciples and Jesus shared their last meal, Jesus made 3 staggering statements among many.

Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. John 14:11-12

And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. John 14:13-14

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever-the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. John 14:16-17

Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them. John 14:21

In Christ, connected with God the Father.

The Spirit in us, voicing for us.

Knowing the Word, committing it to heart and keeping in step with it.

Loving regardless of circumstances, doing greater things, daring to ask and believing for audacious results.

If I want to tell exciting stories, I can’t just lead a normal life.