This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel:

‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’

Says the Lord of hosts.


Over the years I have frequently struggled with that very idea. Oh, no! I never said it directly, but here and there I knew that without me, He might fail.

Remember how I told you about my waterfall and pond in the back yard? It isn’t big, but with a little imagination we might picture Bridal Veil or Horsetail Falls outside of Valdez, Alaska. And Blue Basin in Trinidad has never left my mind even after more than fifty years. Again, this is not Niagara, but just a simple little pond with a small amount of water running freely.

However, just as I expected, we began to attract birds to our little oasis in the back yard. It has become exciting to watch the ever-growing variety that has dropped in for a visit. I expect the list to increase because I decided that with a little help from me, God could feed those birds a little easier than that to which they are accustomed. Yep, I put a feeder out there and overnight, they e-mailed each other and it has already become an interesting scene.

One of the doves decided that by his standing on the feeder he could eat till his heart was content. He also knocked enough seed into the well of our mandarin orange tree to help feed everyone else. Then, he dropped into the well and cleaned house, scattering all the birds. Not even the big black birds attempt to move the “General” of the feed trough. Now I am asking myself, “What type of a problem have I created by taking things into my own hands?”

Here and there in the years of service for Christ, I have sometimes seen others, and more often myself, taking things into my own hands and giving God a little help. I prayed about something and impatiently jumped into making it happen. I have watched preachers play psychological games with people and say we should be depending on the Lord. While we say we will pray, we prey. It is a sick time for our society and for the work of the Lord in particular. We often affront God by trying to assist Him to our desired end. As this process moves into gear, more people might gather and before long we discover that we have created some unanticipated monsters.

I know that the birds’ “belly filling” will either slow down or I will be obligated to turn the whole bunch over to the Lord, which is what I should have done in the first place. But no, I just had to assist HIM because I thought I had a good idea.

“Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord Almighty.” (Zechariah 4:6 NIV)

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