Do you feel like you are working hard, but never getting ahead? This may be in work or financial life. This may also be in your efforts to meet deep emotion needs that you have in life. I want to give you two possibilities that could greatly change your life. Let me give you two word pictures that may speak to how you feel.
- “And they have dug for themselves cracked cisterns that can hold no water at all!”- Jeremiah 2:13 NLT Do you ever feel like the “water” you need, even with all your effort, is going into something that has a hole in it?
- “You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.” Haggai 1:6 NLT Does it feel like the harder you work it is like putting money in a bag and the bag having a hole in the bottom?
Each of these passages, if you read the context, explains why they were having their problem. In the first verse the reason they were struggling is because they were relying on themselves and the partners they could get instead of relying on God, “the fountain of living water.” That is a very different mental picture there, right?
In the second mental picture there also was a very good reason they were having bags with holes in it. In that case the reason was that God had something specific assignment for them to do, and they were focused on their own priorities. Now these are just two of the reasons that we can work hard and get nowhere so this is not to heap guilt on you. For example sometimes we are getting nowhere because we need new systems in our life to overcome a backlog. Maybe we are going the wrong direction like a person walking up the wrong way on an escalator. But these two areas are good places for me to check on from time to time to keep me moving ahead. Here are some questions to think about:
- Are you depending on your own cleverness above the strength God gives?
- Are you looking for things from the world that only God was meant to provide?
- Are there specific things God has asked you to do that you have got distracted from doing?
I’ll end with a verse that encourages me. “LORD, how great is your mercy; let me be revived by following your regulations.” Psalm 119:156 NLT