Sunday, January 11, 2009
Follow His Dreams
Nehemiah 2: 11 I went to Jerusalem, and after staying there three days 12 I set out during the night with a few men. I had not told anyone what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem. There were no mounts with me except the one I was riding on.
Nehemiah 6: 15 So the wall was completed on the twenty-fifth of Elul, in fifty-two days. 16 When all our enemies heard about this, all the surrounding nations were afraid and lost their self-confidence, because they realized that this work had been done with the help of our God.
Today at church my preacher talked about dreaming. More specifically those dreams that God gives us when we delight in Him. You know...those big ol' dreams that seem impossible because - without God's help and enabling us - most often they are too big for us to accomplish.
I read a quote recently from John Maxwell, "If you tell someone your vision and they don't laugh, it's not big enough."
And this one from J. Hudson Taylor, "Unless there is an element of risk in your exploits for God, there is no need for faith."
So all this seems to confirm what God has been putting in my heart for some time: GO TO DAMASCUS! Ah, that seems so scary, doesn't it? Strange food, different language, culture, religion! You are talking to someone who has made it thirty-plus years without going west of Tennessee and you expect her first overseas trip to be to the Middle East? To a country President Bush included in the "Axis of Evil"? Whoa!
So, did ya laugh when you heard this "dream"? If so maybe it's truly from God. Definitely I need His help in taking this huge step! And I guess there is that "element of risk" involved, eh?
Going back to Nehemiah. You see in the first passage how he said his God put something on his heart to do? Psalm 37 tells us to delight in the Lord and He will give us the desire of our hearts. You reckon when we delight in Him, He gives us His desires which ultimately ARE THE BEST and most fulfilling. I hear Americans who seem to be searching for more in life. Shoot, I am that way sometimes. Not satisfied. Surely there is more to life than the daily grind. More entertainment, more activities and more stuff doesn't seem to fill the void for long. I like those verses from Nehemiah. My pastor told us to keep dreaming for when you stop dreaming, you die. Sure you exist physically, but inwardly ... not much there.
Isn't that second passage great? Nehemiah did what God put in his heart to do and later it was accomplished TO THE GLORY OF GOD! God got the praise He deserved because even the enemy nations realized how Nehemiah's God accomplished this great work through His obedient servants.
Instead of doing something and asking God to bless it, I want those dreams from God. And HIS enabling so that when HIS work is accomplished, people can say, "To God be the glory! Great things HE has done!"
By the way, we sang "It Is Well With My Soul" in church this morning. It had come to mind this week, and I just love it. Found it so cool that Richie chose it as one of our songs to sing. Here are my favorite lines, I think.
From verse 2:
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
And then all of this verse:
My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
Whoo hoo! Thank you, Jesus!