1 In the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom and also put it in writing…
“Our spirits naturally bow down to this earth and the things of it; if they move upward in any good affections or good actions, it is God who raises them.” – Matthew Henry
When I chose to study the book of Ezra, I realized that I have no idea what this book is about. It is one of those books of the Bible that we skip over on our way to the ‘more exciting’ or ‘more interesting’ books. I decided to look up some commentaries on this book and was overwhelmed with the great truth this book holds and I am excited to study these chapters with you. Ezra is the story of the Jews being brought back from captivity from Babylon and, ultimately, it represents the redemption of sinners by Jesus Christ.
In Chapter 1, we see the Lord stir the spirit of King Cyrus. To stir, means to prompt action. God prompted action in the heart of the King. God gave him the desire to do His will, ultimately working for His plan. This is a great reminder that God works in our lives and in the lives of others. He can stir us! There have been many times where I have felt stirred to share the Gospel, or prompted to talk to someone, or even to join a cause. These promptings should not be neglected. I often disregard them and keep my focus on the things of this world. I don’t realize that the Holy Spirit is stirring in me. Instead of moving on with my life, these stirrings should be nurtured with prayer and wise counsel to determine the will of God. What a wonderful reminder that God is not a distant God but a God of action, whose hand is in all that we do. God is in control.
Lord, please stir my heart to do your will this week. Help me to love on others and take the focus off myself. Thank you for your constant hand in all I do and say. Amen.