Ford Motor Company recently used a very unique phrase to market their line of pick-up trucks, “Built Ford-tough.” When I consider this phrase, I question whether being built “Ford-tough” is a good thing technically. I say this because one must consider that if something is built “Ford-tough” is that really tough enough. When I consider all of the trucks of every make and model and all of the problems associated with them, I have to say they all are pretty fallible and vulnerable to imperfection by far. While our Senior Pastor would agree that Ford trucks are better than most, they fail to meet any standard of perfection, because they can fail you. While being built “Ford-tough” is great for a truck, It is not enough for us as Christians and as a ministry. We must strive to be built “God-tough”.
Consider the scriptures (Neh. 4); Nehemiah was burdened to rebuild the temple and walls of Jerusalem. His efforts were heroic and commendable; many would say that it was simply the right thing to do. In his heroic effort, he runs into something we all are familiar with, growing opposition. This growing opposition belittled the heroic task God laid on Nehemiah’s heart, tried to distract him and even threaten his efforts. The growing opposition didn’t want what God wanted; they wanted the visible ruins of the walls of Jerusalem to be a reminder of their weakness and defeat forever. The growing opposition took one thing for granted, Nehemiah’s determination to do what God commanded. Nehemiah was built “God-tough”. The desire God placed upon his heart was much greater than his desire to entertain his peers and growing opposition. Nehemiah and his people worked until the job was done, with a sword in one hand and tools in the other. Revival returned to Jerusalem.
Just like Nehemiah, Christians must have a burden for kingdom work and winning lost souls. Our efforts are heroic and commendable, but come with growing opposition. We must be able to do what Nehemiah did, when people ask about our growing opposition we must remember what Nehemiah said to his people in Neh. 4:14 –
And I looked and arose and said to the nobles and to the officials and to the rest of the people, “Do not be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes.”
Ray C. Jones
Pastor to Students