Relief in Our Bondage

Ezra 9:8

“But now, for a brief moment, the LORD our God has been gracious in leaving us a remnant and giving us a firm place in his sanctuary, and so our God gives light to our eyes and a little relief in our bondage.”

This specific chapter in Ezra is about how the people have once again disobeyed the Lord. This time, by intermarrying with other tribes of people who do not believe in God.

I’m taking verse 8 a bit out of context for this post because God used it to teach me something personally.

God is always gracious! He forgives us for our sins every day because of what Christ did on the cross, but I think because we are fickle, it seems like His grace is brief.

What I mean is, we live in this world, surrounded by ungodly ideas and things. It’s a struggle to live in this world and not “live” in it. But if you are walking with the Lord, He opens your eyes to reveal new things and it’s in those moments that we feel God’s grace. We feel that we have “a firm place in his sanctuary”.

The problem, again, is we’re fickle and we live in a broken world, so those moments do not last.

For example, a couple of weeks ago I wrote about the stirring within my heart God had placed in me, to abandon the ways of the “American dream” and follow wherever He leads me. I was so sure o that post, so sure of His calling, and I still am, but I got distracted. No longer do I feel emotionally stirred as I did that week. I got distracted by other people, again, my own wants and fleshy desires.

That happens to us all. Sin is attractive, idols are attractive, whatever they may be, money, men, popularity, success, but because they distract us from God, they are unimportant and they will never fulfill us like He will.

That’s why I find verse 8 to be beautiful, because as he “gives light to our eyes” like He did in stirring up my heart to want His will and not my own, we feel “a little relief in our bondage.” By giving up all we are to Him, we taste freedom and true life, something we will not fully experience until heaven or Jesus returning.

BUT, once we get a taste of it, we keep looking for more. And He never turns away from those who truly seek Him.

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