…for they all wanted to frighten us, thinking, ‘Their hands will drop from the work, and it will not be done.’ But now, O God, strengthen my hands. --Nehemiah 6:9
The work was arduous, time-consuming, and required the keen attention of many craftspeople, overseers, and managers. The building of the house of God was not only physically labor-intensive, but it was also a work of the emotions and the soul. It touched the cells and nerves of the inner life not only of the individuals involved in the work, but of the entire community who stood eagerly by to see the house of their spirit restored. Even so, the urge to stop lurked ever close. Interruptions, disruptions, and obstacles were constant. Antagonistic adversaries tiptoed around the edges needling, wheedling the workers to cease their toil. Perhaps, the greatest work was not the labor at all, but keeping the soul centered in such a holy work. The way to retain that center was to ask for God’s strength.
We, too, experience constant interruptions, disruptions, and adversaries who try to antagonize and dissuade us from our work. And even when there are no external stimuli driving us to refrain from what we are committed to doing, there are inner demons stealthily trying to strangle our motivation and courage to sustain our work. We may think that our work does not compare with the holy work that consumed the Israelites. Yet, every turn of the hand, every formulated idea in the mind, every caring act of toil has the potential of being a building block of the dwelling of God on this planet. It only requires that we stay centered. It only requires that we ask to be strengthened for the sacred work before us.
O God, when my heart beats too slowly and my energy flags, shed your spirit around the pockets of my spirit until I am fortified to make every action one of holiness.
These meditations by Renee Miller first appeared at explorefaith.org
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