Ezra 3-4 B

Do you ever praise God for something he’s done, only to have it come unraveled? A relationship you brag about God redeeming, that ends in divorce. A cancer that shrinks down after relentless treatment and prayer, only to flare up and claim someone’s life. An addiction conquered, only to rear it’s head and consume someone’s life. We probably all have at least one story like that. It’s complicated, God’s sovereignty.

“With praise and thanks, they sang this song to the Lord: ‘He is so good! His faithful love for Israel endures forever!’ Then all the people gave a great shout, praising the Lord because the foundation of the Lord’s Temple had been laid.” 3:11

Then, later, as a result of ego and fear, the men are ordered by the king to stop working on the Temple. It sits half-finished for years. What about all the provision from God? What about the resources provided and the prayers answered? (Bethany wonders some of these same things in her post last time around and counters with some great Scripture from other parts of the Bible.)

How does God love us during opposition? It’s never by eliminating hardship and it’s always by making his presence available. He allows hardships. He leaves room for our free will. He doesn’t always stop the cancer from coming back. But, he has sent his son Jesus and bestowed his Holy Spirit to be with us. We have an eternal escape from our suffering, we have everlasting peace and a perfect home to look forward to. In the meanwhile, we have this beautiful book full of scandalous stories of how he loves us and he is with us. 



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