Ezra 8:31 – Trusting the means or the God who provided the means?

Then we departed from the river of Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month, to go to Jerusalem. And the hand of our God was upon us, and He delivered us from the hand of the enemy and from ambush along the road. Ezra 8:31

In Ezra 8:22, we read that Ezra did not ask the king for protective escorts on his journey back to Jerusalem. Instead he rallied all who travelled with him to fast & pray for God’s protection.

What if Ezra and those who traveled with him got ambushed? Would he be considered irresponsible for not asking the king for escorts? These escorts could well have prevented or soften the impact if they were attacked along the way. Since Ezra had direct access to the King, one could argue that this could be the very reason he was placed in such a position – so that he could help the people of God get the best support for their cause.

However, let us be mindful that when we have more dependence on human means, the less we tend to depend on God. There is a fine balance we need to establish – depending on God versus depending on the means He provides. Many times, God provides the means to help us through circumstances. Our problem is that we often appreciate the means so much that we forget the one who gave us the means. As such, when provided with the means, we ought to use it. But we ought to keep our eyes fixed on the one who provided the means. When we are not provided with the means, we ought to exercise faith in Him who provided us with the opportunity to trust Him instead of the means He provides.

God knows exactly what we need according to the measure of faith He has given us. Let us seek Him whatever our circumstances may be.

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