Being Ready

Gary Bird
Ezra 7:6 This Ezra went up from Babylon; and he was a ready scribe in the law of Moses, which the Lord God of Israel had given: and the king granted him all his request, according to the hand of the Lord his God upon him.

After seventy years of being cast out of their homeland, it was time for God's people to come back into His fellowship and into their land. However, someone qualified was needed to help build the temple.

Ezra was the man for the job! There weren’t many who were ready for such a great responsibility. In fact, most didn’t even want to bother with the task of getting right with God. Thankfully, Ezra had kept himself prepared. How did he keep himself ready?

First, he was willing to leave the comforts of Babylon.

We can parallel the comforts of Babylon with our own home, America. America is a comfortable place and there is nothing wrong if God has blessed us with a comfortable life.

With that said, there will come a time in our life when God calls us to be uncomfortable. For some, it will be a calling to go to another land. For others, it will be an uncomfortable call to lead other people. For all of us, we are called to step outside of our comfort zone and tell others of Christ. What separated Ezra from so many in his day, is he embraced that discomfort, while most ran away from it.

Next, we see that Ezra knew his Bible.

He was a scribe and priest. He was willing to do the work and he understood why he did the work. It’s not enough to just know what’s in the Bible. Many Jews suffered from understanding what to do, but not why to do it.

This made it difficult for them to choose between the cultural norm and God’s direction. They knew how to dress, communicate, go to the temple, sacrifice, tithe, pray, and so on. As the society drifted away from the Lord, they forgot why they did what they did. They didn’t realize God had their best interests in mind and this made it easy for the people to adopt the ways of the Persians and Babylonians.

When hard choices came about, it was easy for them to drop what God commanded them to do because they didn’t realize why God had them doing those things in the first place. Sadly, Christians fall prey to this same trap today. Doing what we need to do is important, but understanding from the Bible why we do it is just as important.

Lastly, we see Ezra trusted God for resources to get the job done.

If God wanted to get the temple rebuilt, He would have to give Ezra the political, financial, and relational skills needed to make it happen. The work was far too big for one man or even a group of men. This job needed God’s blessing.

Today, we still need God’s blessing! Some Christians will quit before they start because they lack the time or resources to do the job at hand. The only problem with this is, they forget to check with the Creator of the universe! It’s important to remember, if God wants something done, it’s going to happen. He will provide all the necessary resources. There are times when we won’t do what God has for us because we don’t want to be uncomfortable.

There are other times we have missed opportunities because we lacked spiritual discernment. Sometimes, we may miss God's calling because we didn't see how the resources could be provided.

Ezra overcame all these pitfalls and had victory in his calling. Faith was the key for him to follow through on God's will, and faith will be our victory as well if we remember to stay ready like Ezra.

Be ready to be uncomfortable when God stretches your ability and uses you in new ways. Be ready by knowing your Bible and spending time studying it every day. Be ready by trusting God to provide the necessary resources to get the job done on His behalf.

Gary Bird

Gary and his family are core members of our church. He assists with multiple minsitries. He and his wife Jessica have four children.

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