Photo and Commentary ©2018 by Robert Howson
Tuesday, June 12, 2018

It must have been rather discouraging, but you have to start somewhere. At a time when a city’s walls represented not only its first line of defense, but also embodied its very identity, completion must have seemed light-years away. Babylon had destroyed the wall and along with it the rest of the city many years before. Now, the returning Israelites faced the formidable task of rebuilding that wall under challenging circumstances. It’s at this point the Lord sent the prophet Zechariah with these words of encouragement: “Do not despise this small beginning, for the eyes of the Lord rejoice to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in the hand of Zerubbabel.” (Zechariah 4:10a Living Bible)

From our human perspective, everything on this earth must have a beginning, even the mighty Mississippi River pictured here. Its start has little resemblance to the waterway that empties into the Gulf of Mexico some 2,340 miles later.

God apparently understands our inability to see very far beyond our present situation, and that’s why Christ Himself offered these words of encouragement to His disciples: “That is how it was written, and that is why it was inevitable that Christ should suffer, and rise from the dead on the third day. So must the change of heart which leads to the forgiveness of sins be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” (Luke 24:46-47 J.B. Phillips New Testament) The spreading of the Good News had to commence somewhere, and in His wisdom, He ordained it should start right where they were standing. Not a bad place for us to start either.