He was my greatest supporter when I arrived on the job but five years later had converted to my staunchest enemy. A few changes and a couple of mistakes was all it took. A few years after I left that position, I heard of his death due to cancer. He died a bitter old man full of unforgiveness.
Opposition is a part of life—even when doing God’s work. Nehemiah discovered this truth too. Our enemies found out that I had finished rebuilding the wall and that no gaps remained (Nehemiah 6:1 NLT).
Not everyone appreciated Nehemiah’s mission of re-building Jerusalem’s walls. He was opposed by enemies and even some of his own people, but he plunged ahead with tenacity and completed the monumental task in a mere 52 days.
Orison Sweet Marden said, “Success is not measured by what you accomplish, but by the opposition you have encountered, and the courage with which you have maintained the struggle against overwhelming odds.”
When doing God’s work yet being opposed, first make sure you’re in God’s will by seeking his guidance. Perhaps the work is admirable; I’m simply going about it the wrong way. But it may be those opposing me are simply adverse to change.
Seeking counsel from others who’ve faced similar situations is also an avenue through which God points me in the right direction.
If after ensuring I’m on God’s path but still being opposed, I maintain the course as Nehemiah did. In the end, I’m accountable to God not others.
Perhaps the greatest challenge is resisting the urge to respond inappropriately. There are certain things I shouldn’t say and particular attitudes I shouldn’t have. After all, my testimony is at stake.
Doing God’s work always brings opposition in some form. Seek his guidance before you respond.
Prayer: Eternal God, when we’re opposed and persecuted for carrying out Your work, give us strength to endure and guidance to forge ahead.
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