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Ripple Effect

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts
The Truth Network Radio
January 24, 2021 7:00 pm

Ripple Effect

Our Daily Bread Ministries / Various Hosts

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January 24, 2021 7:00 pm

The little Bible college in northern Ghana didn’t look impressive—just a tin-roofed cinder-block building and a handful of students. Yet Bob Hayes poured his life into those students. He gave them leadership roles and encouraged them to preach and teach, despite their occasional reluctance. Bob passed away years ago, but dozens of thriving churches, schools, and two additional Bible institutes have sprung up across Ghana—all started by graduates of that humble school.

During the reign of King Artaxerxes (465–424 bc), Ezra the scribe assembled a band of Jewish exiles to return to Jerusalem. But Ezra found no Levites among them (Ezra 8:15). He needed Levites to serve as priests. So he commissioned leaders to “bring attendants to us for the house of our God” (v. 17). They did so (vv. 18–20), and Ezra led them all in fasting and prayer (v. 21).

Ezra’s name means “helper,” a characteristic that resides at the heart of good leadership. Under Ezra’s prayerful guidance, he and his protégés would lead a spiritual awakening in Jerusalem (see chapters 9–10). All they had needed was a little encouragement and wise direction.

That’s how God’s church works too. As good mentors encourage and build us up, we learn to do the same for others. Such an influence will reach far beyond our lifetime. Work done faithfully for God stretches into eternity.

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Welcome to today's encouragement from Our Daily Bread.

Today's reading titled Ripple Effect was written by Tim Gustafson. The little Bible college in northern Ghana didn't look impressive. Just a tin roofed cinder blocked building and a handful of students. Yet Bob Hayes poured his life into those students. He gave them leadership roles and encouraged them to preach and teach despite their occasional reluctance.

Bob passed away years ago, but dozens of thriving churches, schools, and two additional Bible institutes have sprung up across Ghana, all started by graduates of that humble school. During the reign of King Artaxerxes in the book of Ezra chapter 8, Ezra the scribe assembled a band of Jewish exiles to return to Jerusalem. But Ezra found no Levites among them. He needed Levites to serve as priests. So he commissioned leaders to bring attendance to us for the house of our God. They did so, and Ezra led them all in fasting and prayer. Ezra's name means helper, a characteristic that resides at the heart of good leadership. Under Ezra's prayerful guidance, he and his proteges would lead a spiritual awakening in Jerusalem. All they had needed was a little encouragement and wise direction. That's how God's church works too. As good mentors encourage and build us up, we learn to do the same for others.

Such an influence will reach far beyond our lifetime. Work done faithfully for God stretches into eternity. Today's Our Daily Bread devotional scripture reading is from Ezra chapter 8 verses 15 through 21. And I ordered them to go to Ido, the leader in Caciphia. I told them what to say to Ido and his fellow Levites, the temple servants in Caciphia, so that they might bring attendance to us for the house of our God. Because the gracious hand of our God was on us, they brought us Cherubiah, a capable man, from the descendants of Malai, son of Levi, the son of Israel, and Cherubiah's sons and brothers, eighteen in all, and Hashabiah, together with Josiah, from the descendants of Merari, and his brothers and nephews, twenty in all. They also brought 220 of the temple servants, a body that David and the officials had established to assist the Levites.

All were registered by name. There, by the Ahava canal, I proclaimed a fast, so that we might humble ourselves before our God and ask him for a safe journey for us and our children, with all our possessions. Let's pray. Lord, we thank you for the mentors and helpers you've placed in our lives and the way you've used them to teach us and shape us into becoming more and more like Jesus. We pray that you would use us in the same way in someone else's life, and may we grow spiritually together as we seek to serve you. Thank you, Father. It's in Jesus' name we pray. Amen.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-31 14:19:20 / 2023-12-31 14:20:58 / 2

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