Hindrances to Growth
Then they came to Zerubbabel, and to the chief of the fathers, and said unto them, Let us build with you: for we seek your God, as ye do; and we do sacrifice unto him since the days of Esarhaddon king of Assur, which brought us up hither.
Ezra quickly found out that whenever you start building that Satan will provide many hindrances to keep you from building a work for God. These hindrances will come from without, but many will come from within. However, the work of God is so critical that we must never let any opportunity or hindrance pull us away from the great work of building something for God.
When I became the pastor of Maranatha Baptist Church, my desire was to build a great work for God. Certainly, there were detractors at the very beginning, but I expected that to happen because there will always be those who want you to fail. However, now that I have been a pastor for a few years, I have found several hindrances shown in the book of Ezra that could hinder us from building a work for God. Let me share these with you.
First, compromise is always a hindrance to building a work for God. Ezra had barely started building the temple when the adversaries said, Let us build with you. I had just taken the pastorate, when some men from a local compromising Bible college that is not local church came to greet me. Beware of those who had nothing to do with you before you started building something for God. I like to put it this way, the cockroaches will come to build with you until you step on them, and then they will turn to attack you.
Second, weariness can be a hindrance to building a work for God. The people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah to get them to stop. Never let weariness in well doing stop you. You will have to push through tired and weariness if you are going to build anything great for God.
Third, troubles can be a hindrance to building a work for God. The adversaries troubled Ezra, but he kept building. Troubles will come that will try to stop you from building, but there is no trouble that is greater than God. You can overcome any trouble if you get God’s help through prayer.
Fourth, accusations can be a hindrance to building a work for God. The adversaries accused Ezra and his workers of false things, but he did not stop building the temple. People, and many times it will be believers, will say hateful and hurtful things about you that are not true, but you cannot let their venom stop you from building a great work for God.
Fifth, frustration can be a hindrance to building a work for God. The adversaries hired people to frustrate Ezra hoping they would stop building. You will encounter many frustrations when building a work for God, but don’t let the frustrations stop you from building. These frustrations are often the result of backslidden or self-centered believers, but you must never let their actions pull you away from the critical work of building something for God.
Sixth, wrong priorities can be a hindrance to building a work for God. The adversaries tried to yoke up with Ezra to pull him away from his priority, building the temple. There are many things, and they might even be worthy things, that will attempt to pull you away from what you are supposed to be doing, but you must always keep your priorities straight and stay focused on soul winning and building lives for God.