Ezekiel 4:4 Doing What Seems Crazy

“Then lie on your left side and put the sin of the people of Israel upon yourself. You are to bear their sin for the number of days you lie on your side.” Ezekiel 4:4

As God was getting ready to destroy Jerusalem and place all the people into exile, He sent various prophets to warn the people. Ezekiel was one who brought the message of the coming destruction to the people. One of the ways God wanted to show that message was by having Ezekiel lie on his side on the ground for 390 days and bear the sins of the people. Reading later it shows in the same chapter that after this event, he had to roll over and lie for another forty days.

There are times when God has a person do something that seems crazy. For the person, it may seem insane to do what God has asked him to do. God asked Moses to go before Pharaoh to ask him to release the slaves. He asked Moses to cross a sea on foot. He asked Jeremiah to defy the king. He asked John to step out of a boat and walk on water. He asked Jesus to die on the cross.

Each and everything God has asked a person to do was for a purpose. That purpose was greater than the pain, suffering or fear that person might have had in doing it. His goal is to build His kingdom and restore all people to Him.

God may one day ask you to do something that seems crazy. It may go against the norm of most people, including believers. It may be life threatening. It may be painful.

What God may ask of you, may not be the same as what Ezekiel had to do, in fact, read the Bible and very few people did the same exact crazy thing twice. However, it may be crazy by today’s normal standards, or just crazy for you. It could be just be willing to take a hard stand for Jesus; telling someone about Jesus; going into an area to be a witness that is dangerous; quitting a good paying job to do another work for God in a different place; and the list goes on.

Will you be willing to do whatever God asks of you, regardless of how crazy it seems?

Or would you reject God’s request?

I pray today that God will show you what He wants you to do; that He will give you strength to do the work; that love for God and His people will be strong enough for you to do what God wants; and that you will work to build God’s kingdom each day.

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Proverbs 6:6 Ants And Life

Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! Proverbs 6:6

Ants are a little creature that no one really likes, yet they are very amazing and interesting. They can be seen always moving, always working. Watch a line of ants going somewhere. They are always in line with each other as they travel. Disturb an ant pile and watch them go to work to repair the damage.

Along with seeing them work, just take a look at the ant hill that was made. Ant hills can be several inches high and a foot across. Looking at how small each ant is and how small each granule of sand or dirt is, it is amazing how much work they had to do in order to build that hill.

Solomon tells the people to look at the ant and consider its ways. It is always working and building.

Many people do not like to work. They want to sit at home or somewhere else and relax. The method of relaxing is different for each person. Some like to play games, watch sports, read books, sleep, or something else. The common thread is that they do not want to do any work.

People like to procrastinate on what needs to be done. Or they want to let someone else do the job.

Solomon was looking at the provision for self. Working to provide food, clothing and shelter for yourself.

Along with needing to work for those things, Jesus gave you a job to do. His job is to build His kingdom. It is a spiritual, eternal job on this earth. That job is to go out and tell others about Him. How many people in the world around you still do not know about Jesus?

As you go through your days, you must take an inventory of how you are spending your days. How much time are you just relaxing?

And how much time are you working to do God’s will on this earth and build His kingdom?

Do not allow this world to distract you from the job you need to do. Allow God to give you the strength needed to get the work done. Do not slack off today.

I pray today that you will know what God wants you to do; that God will strengthen you for the job to be done; that God will reveal areas that need work; and that you will find rest in God alone.

Ezra 4:24 Giving In To Pressure

Thus the work on the house of God in Jerusalem came to a standstill until the second year of the reign of Darius king of Persia. Ezra 4:24

King Cyrus had given the Israelites permission to rebuild the temple and the city of Jerusalem. The people in the surrounding area began to be afraid. They that if the city was rebuilt, the Israelites would revolt and break away. They persuaded the king to force the people to stop the building. After a lot of pressure, the Israelites stopped the building of the temple.

In the eyes of the world, Christians are a dangerous threat, even though Christians are to love everyone, including their enemies. The threat comes in that Christians do not believe in or act the way the world does. Jesus had set a standard that was different from that of the world. This has a severe effect on the lives of those in the world and they do not like it.

People in the world try to accuse Christians of hate because they do not conform to the world’s standards of living. For many years in America there has been the term of “political correctness” being used. Believers are threatened in many ways to give in to the world’s way of living.

Sadly, many believers have given in to the pressure to conform to this world’s standards. They feel the threats of job losses, jail time, lawsuits and more, and choose to change their words and standards. Churches, and many believers, now allow open sin as acceptable in God’s eyes, changing the Word of God, and doing what God clearly says not to do.

As the Israelites gave in to the pressure to stop building the temple, many believers today give in to the pressure to stop building God’s kingdom. They stop being His witness out of fear of those in the world.

The world will do their best to put pressure on you to turn from Jesus and follow their ways. As the world puts on the pressure on you to give in to their ways, you must make a choice as to who you will follow.

Will you follow Jesus, who gives life?

Or will you follow this world, which brings only death?

I pray today that you will stay focused on what God wants you to do; that you will only live for God; that God will give you strength to overcome pressure to turn from Him; and that you will continue to build His kingdom.