jtrhart

Posts Tagged ‘discernment’

Questioning Distractions

In Uncategorized on March 9, 2010 at 7:44 am

Three questions to consider when something unexpected happens (distraction) while you are diligently working away:

  1. Is this immoral? (Nehemiah 6:12)
  2. Will this move me in the opposite direction of my goal? (Nehemiah 2:20)
  3. Will this hinder someone else from accomplishing their desire? (Nehemiah 5:9)

If you answer “yes” to any of these questions then I suggest putting the word “no” to good use.

See the Nehemiah series on distractions for more information.

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Nehemiah: Distractions, Part 4

In Uncategorized on March 8, 2010 at 7:37 am

Final post on how Nehemiah dealt with distractions.

Nehemiah 6 describes a similar distraction that was shown in chapter 2, the verbal kind. Nehemiah’s enemies attempted to pull him away from his work by dragging him into endless political discussions. They repeatedly sent him messages asking him to meet with them. Each time Nehemiah basically ignores them. He tells them he has no time to meet and talk. He has a goal (get the wall built) and he can’t stop and deliberate.

Discernment

The last attempt to get Nehemiah away from his project (if you distract the leader you distract everyone else) was different. One of his own people told him that his life is in danger and that he should go into the inner part of the temple sanctuary and hide. Nehemiah took this one seriously because of the source. As he thought about it he came to see that it too was a distraction. This time he had to be discerning in his thinking.

He found an error in the request that exposed the message for what it really was. Nehemiah was not a priest and only the priests were allowed to enter into the inner part of the temple. If this message had been from God as a warning then he knew that God would not ask him to sin by doing something against God’s Law. Nehemiah did not allow the fear for his life to overshadow his good judgement in knowing right and wrong.

A moral distraction is probably a little more rare for us. We aren’t tempted daily to break the law while remodeling a bathroom or completing a report for your boss. Unfortunately this makes us less aware of the danger when it does come up because we get blindsided quickly. Are you prepared for this kind of distraction when it knocks at your door just before quitting-time Friday afternoon?