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Weekly Devotional from February 14, 2005

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Women in Discipleship (sm)
Devotionals for 2005
Week 6

Greetings in the name of Jesus,

There is such an interesting analogy in the concept that things sown in sorrow can later be harvested with joy. As I read the Bible, I discover so many verses that relate to one another. This week I am enjoying some very interesting verses that begin with great pain but end up with joy.

Scripture to ponder: Ezra 3:12-13 - "Yet many of the priests and Levites and heads of fathers' households, the old men who had seen the first temple, wept with a loud voice when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, while many shouted aloud for joy, so that the people could not distinguish the sound of the shout of joy from the sound of the weeping of the people, for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the sound was heard far away."

Psalm 126:6 - "He who goes to and fro weeping, carrying his bag of seed, shall indeed come again with a shout of joy, bringing his sheaves with him."

In the book of Ezra, we see the people who remembered the first temple that had been destroyed. As the new temple was being rebuilt, they showed their emotions with weeping. There were also younger people who delighted in the reestablishment of the temple and shouted with joy in its construction. In this passage we see old and young coming together to worship.

Then there is the companion passage of Psalm 126:6. The Psalmist speaks of someone planting seeds while weeping. Then he finishes the verse with shouts of joy when the harvest comes. What can we learn from these verses?

It is hard to step out in faith to honor the Lord in our life and work. Sometimes it may even be painful and sorrowful to walk in faith. These verses point to pain. Whether it is a big loss, such as the temple being destroyed, or the hard work of labor that takes all the strength and resources that we have - both can bring sorrow and weeping. BUT then comes the harvest! Though we may not see it today, tomorrow, or next month, we can be assured that the harvest will come. God is faithful. The temple was finally being rebuilt after 70 years. The harvest of fields can take months. It takes time for God to do His work. He just wants us to be faithful in the process. This gives me hope, and with hope comes joy.

What are you waiting on in your life now that the "planting" and "rebuilding" have been completed? We each have desires for God's word to go forth. His timing is perfect. I pray that your harvest will be filled with abundance in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Enjoy the labor of the Lord in your life this week.
Sandra Davis for the team of Women in Discipleship


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