Why and What If

One day I got Su Ling to believe there were purple-tailed squirrels running around the African bush. I was thrilled – until she found out the truth. Su Ling was never one to shy from physical abuse no matter the size of her opponent! Her bubbly personality belied a fierce determination at whatever she put her mind to. But she was also good at picking the quiet one from the crowd and do her best to draw them in. Su Ling, thanks for befriending the kampung boy with the dad hair. I can’t believe you’re gone but I know you’re enjoying an early catchup with Papa in heaven ahead of the rest of us!

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever -Ps 73:26

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Patience

 

James was writing to the 12 tribes of Israel, scattered abroad. Interestingly, Judah and Benjamin were at this time returned to the Promised Land, though the other tribes would gradually be lost to history.

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. James 1:2-3

Patience (hupomone): in the Greek is endurance, steadfastness, something to be patiently waited for

Testing (dokimion in Greek): what is found approved after testing

The proving of one’s faith is what births endurance.

But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. James 1:4

Perfect (teleios in the Greek): complete in all its parts, full grown, specifically of the completeness of the Christian character

Complete (holokleros in the Greek): sound, perfect, entire

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. v5-6

Doubting (diakrino in Greek): separate, distinguish, discern one thing from another, hesitate, waver – can refer to both over-judging or close reasoning

For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways v7-8

One who has one foot in both camps cannot fully experience Godly wisdom. However while in God, we are certainly not taking the easy path – hence the need for endurance! However there is always wisdom for those who need it.

#whathopeisbuiltof

The assembling together of individuals from different backgrounds of class, religion and language, united towards a common goal, one that would (be perceived to be) make a difference to not only those gathering together but their kith and kin continents apart. This happened not in one location, but in multiple cities across the world, almost simultaneously over the space of 2 days, coordinated by people who, until then, had not met each other, and who might never cross paths again. Is this a movie worth making? At the very least, a doco might be in order!

I would never call myself a patriot. Politics never figured strongly into my motivations for deciding where my path would lead in life. Though I’m Malaysian and catch up with the news back home from time to time, I would be hard pressed to name 5 key members of the ruling party let alone the opposition. I’ve never voted, though I’m a registered voter. Global BERSIH, a clean election leading to a clean(er) government and a chance for corruption to be marginalised and fair play + equal opportunities to have their day in the sun are concepts that are vague and idealistic – something that I’d lend my verbal support to, but have little inkling of the depths, backstory and the sacrifice it takes to make it all happen.

This year I decided to register a postal vote for the first time. At the time I felt it would be a relatively easy way to support my intentions with an action rather than words alone (not that I had many words to say on the subject before in any case) but mainly because I felt the process would not be unduly taxing on my behalf. Not without warning, news began spreading that votes might not arrive on time for us abroad to sign and post back to our respective polling stations in Malaysia on the 9th of May. I began seeing texts and Facebook posts of election news and for the first time, took an interest in seeing what was up. The manifestos made for interesting reading, mainly because I could only find one side’s document easily available online!

My postal ballot arrived on the morning of the 7th of May. A courier service would by that point only arrive in Malaysia on the 10th of May, the day after voting. I spent an hour ensuring the form was filled in correctly and the next hour figuring out how my postal vote would arrive back home in time.

Unbeknownst to me, fellow Malaysians around the world were going through the same dilemma and with no help or support from the Electoral Committee back home, took matters into their own hands. Facebook and other forms of social media were used to not just complain about the situation, but purposefully for asking for help. Six degrees of separation ceased to exist as requests were answered by people who knew people who were heading home in person to vote and who would be willing to carry others’ votes home. As the number of requests mounted, meetups were organised by individuals (who largely, up till that point had not met each other, and who were likely themselves working that day) across social media. These meetups would occur at airports, libraries, common areas, all for the purpose of collecting votes and distributing them amongst those flying back on the day. The term ‘runner’ was coined. Spilling over to the 8th, those who still received votes on the day found themselves looking through Google doc spreadsheets, organised by state, country and dropoff locations, for runners that would help carry votes home. Further pickups were being coordinated at flight transit points along international routes where runners would pick up votes from multiple countries before landing in Malaysia. And upon landing, votes would then be picked up by yet another chain of volunteers, to be conveyed to the individual polling stations.

As if this was not enough, courier services like DHL found themselves inundated with calls from Malaysians checking the status of their postal ballots and their expected delivery date. And airline pilots who are travelling back home have volunteered to carry votes on others’ behalf.

Why did all this have to happen? Without speculating on the intentions of the Electoral Committee and the current ruling party, the votes could have easily been sent a few weeks ago to allow for the delay in postage and the return post home. The process of form-filling could have been explained in detail via social media videos to aid those abroad in filling up their votes correctly. And courier services could have been set up to streamline the return process and ease the increased demand on postal services. The voting day could have been moved to a more convenient time to allow more Malaysians to return home to vote. The fact that none of this occurred is at the very least, a grave oversight in the process management of a national election (and an international embarrassment) and at worst, a not so subtle disregard of the rights of Malaysians worldwide (there is of course, an even worse implication which, although left unsaid, is on everyone’s mind at present).

My own vote’s journey was as follows. Upon filling my form out, I was told to contact a person based in a nearby suburb for help in getting the ballot to the airport. This gentleman (who was at work when I called him) then directed me to his wife who was at home with their baby at the time. I pulled up outside a lovely brick house with instructions to ‘knock softly as the baby might be asleep’. With some nervousness I did so, and was greeted by a young woman in a bright yellow Global BERSIH T-shirt who kept apologising throughout the conversation for how messy the home was (it was NOT). I blurted out my thanks and at how impressed and amazed I was that Malaysians were coming out to help each other, and how most people who met today might never meet again. This ballot, along with several others delivered to this house during the day, would be collected by her husband that evening and delivered to the airport to a runner who would fly back to Penang that night (7th of May). Upon arrival, a friend’s sister had volunteered to pick up the votes destined for the polling station in my municipality of Beruas in Perak. A relatively painless process on my part, but how much of this could have been avoided with proper planning?

Much can be made of this being a flash-in-the-pan moment, never to be repeated, and potentially of little actual value in the process. But what actually transpired (and continues to happen as I type) was birthed out of a desire to see fair play and the odds evened out. And so the ‘little people’ came out of their offices, schools, hospitals, rural bedrooms and city apartments and united without fuss or making a scene, utilising the tools that made the Instagram millenials famous to coordinate an intercontinental transport system that should have existed but didn’t.

I would still not call myself a nationalist, nor would I claim to take more than a passing interest in national Malaysian politics, but this (what should have been simple) act of filling in and sending a postal vote in time for the national elections has brought home to me the need for change back home. And while change is dreaded for its’ uncertainty of outcome, and the painful breaking apart of current molds to make way for new ones; if those who are involved in this change have lived through the past decade in Malaysia, one hopes that no matter their religious or political inclinations, that they share a united desire for a Malaysia free of injustice at every level.

I was describing the days’ proceedings above to my Mauritian housemate, who replied that while he could identify with the current sentiment in Malaysia, that the general feeling in Mauritius is that of resignation that the status quo would not change and that nothing can be done about it. This, view, no doubt shared by others around the world in every situation where the odds against the perceived overarching threat are too small, is one which I hope will never come near my home.

Prophecies

“Do not despise prophecies.” 1 Thess 5:20, BSB

But what are they? And do they still occur? And are they contrary to Rev 22:18 (I testify to everyone who hears the words of prophecy in this book: If anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book)?

Paul delves into prophecy and the gift of prophesying in 1 Cor 14. In fact he encourages people to pursue the gift of prophesying over other gifts such as tongues.

“Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. For he who speaks in a tongue does not speak to men but to God, for no one understands him; however, in the spirit he speaks mysteries. But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men.” 1 Cor 14:1-3, NKJV

Herein is described part of the purpose of prophecy, namely to edify, exhort and comfort men.

Edify (oikodome in Greek): the act of building

Exhort (paraklesis): an intimate call that shows how the Lord weighs in the relevant facts, holy urging, is used of the Lord directly motivating and inspiring believers to carry out His plan, delivering His particular message to someone else, is shaped by the individual context, so it can refer to: exhortation, warning, encouragement, comfort etc.

Comfort (paramuthia): comfort, with a greater degree of tenderness than paraklesis, console, speaking closely to anyone

“Now, brothers, if I come to you speaking in tongues, how will I benefit you, unless I bring you some revelation or knowledge or prophecy or teaching?” 1 Cor 14:6, NKJV

Here we see the distinction between revelation, knowledge, prophecy and teaching. Also note here how prophecy involves revealing truth, which is the Word, and should never contradict the Word of God. And it is also worth noting that commentators are unclear as to exactly how these 4 are entirely different or distinct to each other. There can be interplays and overlaps between them, as in a situation where a word of knowledge is given to someone regarding another person and is communicated via the gift of communicating this revealed truth (prophecy) – intentionally always to comfort and build up the person.

Revelation (apokalupsis): an unveiling, uncovering, revealing, principally used of the revelation of Jesus Christ (the Word), especially a particular manifestation of Christ (his Will) previously unknown of its full extent.

Knowledge (gnosis): working knowledge gleaned from first-hand experience, connecting theory to application via a direct relationship, only as reliable as the relationship it derives from

Prophecy (propheteia): the gift of communicating and enforcing revealed truth, involves divinely-empowered forthtelling (asserting the mind of God) or foretelling (prediction)

Teaching (didache): doctrine, what is taught (summarised body of respected teaching), systematic theology

“But if an unbeliever or uninstructed person comes in while everyone is prophesying, he will be convicted and called to account by all,” 1 Cor 14:24, NKJV

The effect of communicated prophecy towards the uninitiatied is shown here, where an unpersuaded, or a layman comes into contact with prophecy, he/she is both convicted and examined – and the unknown is brought to light in his/her life.

Convicted (elegcho): disciplined, shown to be guilty

Examined (anakrino): evaluation and judgement via the process of careful study

“and the secrets of his heart will be revealed. So he will fall facedown and worship God, proclaiming, “God is truly among you!” 1 Cor 14:25, NKJV

The ultimate result being a deference, and total acknowledgement of who God is.

 

“Two or three prophets should speak, and the others should weigh carefully what is said.” 1 Cor 14:29, NKJV

Weigh, discern (diakrino): properly investigate, judge, close-reasoning

Prophecies should not be taken at face value but be carefully weighed and reasoned between prophets, or elders of the church

Interestingly Paul goes on in verse 30 to use ‘revelation’ while talking about prophets and discerning what is being said in verse 29, and going back to “For you can all prophesy in turn…” in verse 31, suggesting an overlap between prophecy and revelation.

A verse that I’ve not paid much attention to before: “The spirits of prophets are subject to prophets.” 1 Cor 14:32, NKJV, implies (via commentary on BibleHub) that though the prophecy is divinely-inspired, prophets should be able to control themselves to go in order, as per Paul, and not to lose all self-control. Whether or not this only refers to prophets as in the NT is of some debate, but it is worth bearing in mind when considering how certain ‘popular manifestations’ are known for their loss of self-control.

 

There is more to be added to the discussion of my original questions above, but so far it is evident that prophecy as a gift of the Holy Spirit was encouraged by Paul, that there were benefits conferred upon the church by those who practiced this gift, and that it was able to convict unbelievers as well as build up believers. Prophecy always involved (and should not contradict) the Word (truth) and served to either more fully reveal the Word (a possibly overlap with revelation, knowledge or doctrine), the mind of Christ, or to predict. There was a sense of orderliness and a need to carefully consider each prophecy, especially amongst those who themselves had the gift.

Seeking God

At our Encounter Team meeting last night, Ps Ted shared a message with us about seeking God’s presence and that the whole focus of what we do on and off the stage (and in the other days of the week) is to bring His presence wherever we go. For His presence heals (all the times Jesus healed in the gospels), restores (Jer 29:12-14), protects (Ex 13:21), brings life (Amos 5:4) and gives us identity (Col 3:1-4).

Was having a conversation with a friend, who brought up the truth that we carry God’s presence wherever we go, being the temple of the Holy Spirit, and that our life is lived constantly in His presence whether we are at work or in church. While none of this is disputed, it did bring to mind how we use the term ‘seek His presence’ and why we say this.

Why the call to seek His presence?

  1. From a Christian perspective:

On a personal level, it is of course true that I am not constantly aware of His presence, and that I lose sight of Him occasionally in life. However does that mean that I am any less effective as salt and light? I believe that God is able to work His will through us despite ourselves. However, I also believe that when the focus is on Him fully, that there is a greater openness and readiness to both give and receive from Him. And this is evident, in that when I am focussed on myself and my problems, I am less inclined to hear from God and my actions and words reflect what is going on inside me, which at times is pretty ungodly!

This also applies to a corporate sense I believe, in that when we worship / do life together as a congregation/lifegroup, we can do so without acknowledging and indeed, elevating God via song/word/prayer (but yet still carrying His presence with us in our role as temples). If this is the case, 2 things occur: firstly, we are just another club or gathering. And secondly, we miss the opportunity to grasp the significance of God’s presence when we are gathered together. Heb 11:24-25 is an exhortation for us to gather, but Matt 18:20 acknowledges the presence of God in a gathering. Col 3:16 encourages us to pray, teach and even admonish each other as we sing His praises.

2. What about those outside the faith?

The Bible talks of people being blind, a veil over their eyes and that we live in a fallen world where we walk as representations and conduits by which God’s eternal kingdom is displayed to those around us. Mark 6:4-5 describes Jesus not being received with honour in his hometown, where He was not able to do many miracles. Clearly, a lack of faith is key here (Heb 11:6), although there are many instances where Jesus displayed His power despite everyone not believing (feeding the thousands, healing the sick). But this does not mean those outside the faith cannot experience the person of Jesus; in fact that’s what we are called to be!

 

So…..

At the end, I believe that while we carry the presence of God wherever we go, there is also a conscious decision we make to acknowledge it, and to tune our ears to hear Him. James 4:8 “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James wrote this in the midst of such verses as “Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (4:7) and “Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members?” (4:1). It is too easy to get distracted in this life. And while we should be constantly aware of His presence in us, we should also consciously turn our ears and eyes and focus our attention to Him at every opportunity, partly because that’s the polite thing to do in a relationship of any kind (!) and mostly because God always answers when we speak to Him; something we do when we acknowledge His presence.

Endure

Stay

Continue

Endure

Remain

Sojourn, tarry
To persevere

If you remain in Me, and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. John 15:7

This is to My Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, proving yourselves to be My disciples. John 15:8

As my Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Remain in my love. John 15:9

 

The above were some of the last words of Jesus to his disciples before he was arrested. Perhaps uttered on the way to Gethsamane, this is arguably the most intimate conversation Jesus had with his followers. Earlier, he had washed their feet. Judas Iscariot had already left by now. Jesus had spoken of who He was and what He was about to do and had promised His Spirit to them. And in this somewhat pressured situation, I am left with the overwhelming sense of love that Jesus had for them; and for wanting them to know and to be prepared for what was to come, not just the physicality of the crucifixion but for the entirety of their lives to come.

And so we are to abide in Him (for Jesus is the living Word made flesh), and to do so is to abide in His love. The words carry a message of rest, and restoration (sojourn, tarry), but also undertones of steadfastness and perseverance (endure, continue) as well as permanence (remain, stay).

Holding back

There’s always been a sense in my life of holding something back. I’ve tried to narrow it down to the following:

  1. Holding off opening or using something in hopes of a perceived ‘right’ moment whereby its’ use will be most appropriate/appreciated
    • putting off building some of my Lego collection until there is a place to put it (ie when I buy a place of my own)
  2. Putting off the use of and item, or the learning of a skill due to the perceived lack of time to fully learn/use it
    • delaying learning how to use Ableton until I have some time to spare

While I don’t think there’s anything inherently wrong with the above, I have felt for some time now that I am unconsciously shelving a number of things away and not making much effort to carve out the space to actually bring them to life. Worse, I often find it easier to purchase/commit to things that I know will fit into the above categories, thus adding to the backlog (my Steam games’ catalogue is one that I’ve resigned to never finish!).

One of the things in 2018 I’ve resolved to do:

  1. play to my strengths
    • speed reading
    • love of organisation
    • ability to recall
    • love of sharing new experiences
  2. to carve out time in my schedule to tick some of the above off my list
  3. To hold off purchases until some of the list has been cleared, and until plans have been made to utilise what I’m buying

Hi 2018!

In the midst of the post-Christmas rush, I’ve been winding down watching Netflix’s The Crown (a much more sombre affair than Season 1) and decided to write out some reflections of the year gone by and what I’m looking forward to in the year to come.

2017

  • was the year I finished my FRACP Nephrology training
  • was the year I started a clinical PhD on donor kidney organ allocation
  • was the year I had to change my PhD topic from organ allocation, to transplant risk scoring systems, to eligibility criteria for kidney transplants, and finally settle on improving the kidney-pancreas transplant scene in Australia/New Zealand from an organ allocation point of view
  • was the year I moved in with Calvin again – this time in Ringwood!
  • was the year I started doing private nephrology work
  • was the year I felt more involved in teaching in LG (still needing to learn how to do pastoral care!)
  • was the year I took a back step in missions
  • was the year I took a step forward in exercise – with running and weekend sports (my first 10km and 15km were highlights, as were the run-catchups with Sam)
  • was the first year in a long while that I’d been back to Malaysia twice in the same year!
  • I attended my first destination wedding (In Bali! Thanks John and Diana for the invite!)
  • was the year I felt I was more intentional in a few areas: meeting and getting to know the young adults in church more, being involved in Healing Rooms and teaching in LG, keeping up the weekend sports
  • and also felt I could’ve done more with: keeping up to date with the nephrology news, doing more research as opposed to clinic work, being more missions-focused, being more pastoral in LG
  • was the year I stepped out of one relationship, and after some time, into another (Thanks Kat!)

Lay Up Treasures in Heaven

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.” Matt 6:19-20

The Lamp of the Body

“The lamp of the body is the eye. If therefore your eye is good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in you is darkness, how great is that darkness!” v22-23

You Cannot Serve God and Riches

“No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.” v24

Do Not Worry

“Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

Therefore do not worry, saying, “What shall we eat?” or “What shall we drink?” or “What shall we wear?” For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”v25-34

 

I’m looking forward to a few things in 2018, some of which are big, others less so. Often I am prone to worry, even as I go about my day -to-day. What I need to watch, then, is where my eyes are fixed on. If I’m fixing my eyes on unwholesome things, or time-wasters, it will affect the rest of me. Often, I will have to check myself and ask, ‘Who am I doing this for?’ And finally, in and out of uncertain times, I need to

Seek: zeteo – to investigate, to reach a terminal resolution “getting to the bottom of the matter”

Kingdom: basileia – the realm in which a king sovereignly rules, especially refers to the rule of Christ in believers’ hearts

Righteousness: dikaiosune – the divine approval of God, what is deemed right by the Lord, what is approved in His eyes

 

I need to look for Christ in me, and others, and look for what He approves as the standard by which excellence in my life is judged.

 

And so, in 2018:

  • Work
    • I will finish 2 chapters of my PhD
    • I will publish 3 papers
    • I will present at 2 conferences
    • I will give back to the unit at MMC
  • Play
    • I will run a half-marathon
    • I will lose my tummy
    • I will restart ultimate frisbee
    • I will welcome new people to the sports group
  • Church
    • I will develop pastoral skills
    • I will lead a missions team, not just on a trip, but on a journey which God will use to increase the depth of our love, faith and deepen our bond with Him
    • I will train 2 new musos
    • I will train 1 new LG leader
  • Personal
    • I will learn how to read the Bible
    • I will actually take time to worship and pray
    • I will finally get to grips with Ableton
    • Learn a new language!
    • I will get hold of my finances
    • I will take time to write
    • I will get a RRVisa
    • I will be more open about my faith at work
    • I will buy a house
    • I will have my family over to stay in that house
    • I will meet up more often with my cousins
    • I will talk more often with family back home
    • I will journey along, and fight, if necessary for the right to progress to the next stage of relationships!

 

Come on 2018!

 

 

 

Stretching out and being filled

‘The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.

He makes me to lie down in green pastures.

makes me to lie down = rabats (Hebrew) = stretch oneself out, lie stretched out

Brings to mind the extreme and luxurious state of rest when one is able to stretch and yawn, in the dream-like state between sleep and awakefulness, knowing there is no need to rush because there is nothing planned

‘He leads me beside the still waters.

He restores my soul.’

restores = shub (Hebrew) = returns, brings back, recompensed, recovered,

soul = nephesh (Hebrew) = a living being, life, self, person, desire, passion, appetite, emotion

God returns to us our desires, passion and literally brings us back to life.

Leadership P1

‘Now it happened when Sanballat, Tobiah, Geshem the Arab, and the rest of our enemies heard that I had rebuilt the wall, and that there were no breaks left in it (though at that time I had not hung the doors in the gates), that Sanballat and Geshem sent to me, saying, “Come, let us meet together among hte villages in the plain of Ono.” But they thought to do me harm.’ Neh 6:1-2

‘So I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down. Why should the work cease while I leave it and go down to you?” But the sent me this message four times, and I answered them in the same manner.’ Neh 6:3-5

When we embark on a project, there may be attempts to derail it by well-sounding intentions. Sometimes very persistent intentions.

‘In it was written: It is reported among he nations, and Geshem says, that you and the Jews plan to rebel; therefore, according to these rumors, you are rebuilding the wall, that you may be their king.’ Neh 6:6

‘Then I sent to him, saying, “No such things as you say are being done, but you invent them in your own heart.” Neh 6:8

Occasionally false rumours about us will be nosed about, with the intention of slowing us down and weakening our resolve. However we have the liberty to call them out for what they are and move on.

‘For they all were trying to make us afraid, saying, “Their hands will be weakened in the work, and it will not be done.” Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands. Neh 6:9

We constantly remind ourselves who is in control, and seek refuge and sustenance from Him. We draw our approval from Him, not necessarily from man.

‘Afterward I came to the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah, the son of Mehetable, who was a secret informer; and he said, “Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple, and let us close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you; indeed, at night they will come to kill you.” Neh 6:10

And I said, “Should such a man as I flee? And who is there such as I who would go into the temple to save his life? I will not go in!”Neh 6:11

At yet other times, we may be called to compromise on God’s standards for seemingly reasonable reasons. We need to see them for what they truly are, and stand our ground. God grants us insight into these situations so it’s not really taking a risk (though it may seem so at the time).

‘Then I perceived that God had not sent him at all, but that he pronounced this prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him.’ Neh 6:12

When we persist despite these challenges, there will be talk of a different sort. And no wonder – who ever heard of a wall being built in 52 days! (most houses take way longer to even renovate!)

‘So the wall was finished on the twenty-fifth day of Elul, in fifty-two days. And it happened, when all our enemies heard of it, and all the nations around us saw these things, that they were very disheartened in their own eyes; for they perceived that this work was done by our God.’ Neh 6:15-16

Through no formal preaching of intention, others will see past our worldly efforts, and acknowledge the presence of a higher purpose and being in what we do.

 

We are certain of our calling

We seek God and gain insight from Him when others seek to waylay our efforts

We call things out for what they are

We do not compromise on God’s standards and truth

Others will see God working through us