Not by might
There is a scripture that the Holy Spirit often quickens to me when I am unsure what to do about a situation. I have some thoughts about the action I want I take – but often those actions are rooted in my own hurt and strong desire to see change. They are not necessarily the actions God wants me to take. That scripture is …
And he answered and said to me, “This is the word of Yahweh to Zerubbabel, saying, ‘Not by strength and not by power, but only by my Spirit,’ says Yahweh of hosts. Zechariah 4:6 LEB
A recent example. Without getting too specific this week I was concerned about a situation and what it would mean for 2020. I didn’t want a repeat of what had happened in 2019. I had a plan of action, but I wasn’t entirely comfortable with it. Notice all the I’s in those few sentences!
That feeling of uncomfortableness made me stop and take a moment to speak with God, “God, please help me, I’m not sure if I should do this.” And then this scripture came to mind, thank you Holy Spirit.
So he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty. Zechariah 4:6 NIV
“Not by might
Nor by power
But by my Spirit,” says the Lord Almighty
My next words to God were something like this, “Okay God, by your Spirit. I will do nothing. I’m going to trust that if You want this conversation to happen, then you will orchestrate it.”
And within an hour I found myself with an opportunity to speak to the exact person, able to say what I wanted to say, knowing that I was being heard, and that 2020 would have a different outcome to 2019. Thank you Jesus.
This was not the first time that God has used this Scripture to remind me that His ways are different to mine, and always much better! But it’s more than a reminder, every time it has been a call to action.
Actually it has been a series of actions that involve me:
- surrendering my plans
- examining my heart regarding my motives for wanting to take that action, repenting when necessary
- waiting on the Lord to see what He was going to do
- being ready for what God would ask me to do
In every instance of this happening God has worked in His mysterious ways, resolved the situation and brought about the change – all glory to Him.
Perhaps I need to add this scripture to my daily prayer …
“Thank you for this day Jesus. Thank you for loving me. Help me today to remember that it is not by might, not by power, but by Your Spirit, that all things will work together for good. …..”
In our world today we are surrounded by the narrative, “You can do it. You can make it happen. You are in control of your destiny.” I disagree with these statements, from the perspective that they are all relying on us – you and me to make it happen. We are imperfect. We don’t have all the answers. We don’t know what is going to happen in the future. We don’t know all the intricacies of people’s emotions and motives.
But God does. And when we surrender our life to Jesus, and change the narrative and acknowledge that He is the one that empowers us to do it; He is the one who makes it happen; and that Jesus is the one who offers us an eternal destiny, only then we will live a fulfilling life here on earth.
A life where we are not forcing change, we are not living by our inadequate efforts alone, but instead day by day we are becoming more dependent on our Heavenly Father and His ways. We are growing the fruits of the Spirit and becoming the blessing to others that He has called us to be. Only by His Spirit.
Then he said to me, “This is what the Lord says to Zerubbabel: It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. Zechariah 4:6 NLT