Uplift with power (3)
Week 34: 17/08/2023. Thu
Today, we can do three things to revive our spirits, just like how Nehemiah and his generation did self-evaluation as summarized in their prayer to God:
- Remember God's faithfulness and mercies;
- Acknowledging our shortfalls and more; and
- Recommit in writing to improve.
Nehemiah and contemporaries traced their relationship with the LORD in history, starting from Abram (9:7). They saw that the LORD had been consistent and reliable in His dealings with Israel.
They remembered God's election of Abram, the covenant to Abram's offsprings, saving them from slavery, the Red Sea, Mount Sinai and the provisions in the desert—these were all milestones in their national and religious history. God had been consistently been righteous, caring and benevolent.
On the other hand, their prayers acknowledged that their predecessors "acted presumptuously and stiffened their neck", "did not obey your commandments", preferred to return to Egypt, even "cast your law behind their back and killed your prophets" (9:26). Have we neglected His work and invitations for contribution?
Nevertheless, they made a written commitment to improve, even on "the sealed documents" (9:38). Commitments should not be looked at as boring & "tying us down for nothing". Commitments are also reminders of what we valued in the past. These serve as objective measurements to counter any possible self-justification against contrary evidence, or "sweep under the carpet" self-evaluation.
REFLECTION: Is it time to do thorough self-evaluations, so that we won't be bogged down by non-useful exertions, but instead find our tasks accomplished easier and relationships more cheerful?
... continue tom