I MUST ADMIT IT!… Ezra 9: 8-9

I really don’t want to admit it.  I’m ashamed in some ways.  You’ll forgive me, won’t you?  But I must.  I can’t hammer a straight nail if my life depended on it.  There it is.  I’ve said it.  The cat’s out of the bag!  Anyone who knows me is snickering and sniveling as they could have guessed it all along.  Smarty-pants!

My brother, Robert, can hammer straight on with his eyes closed and one hand tied behind his back.  Mechanically-inclined, to say the least, is that older brother of mine.  And he’s always let me know it, as if I had one iota of doubt.  He’s gifted that way.  The Lord made him with both a steady eye and hand.

But I wonder how his book is coming along?  How his sermons are being received by a congregation week after week for years and years?  Put that shoe on, brother of mine, if it fits?!

God has gifted each of us in different ways.  And I thank the Lord for the gifts given Robert, and the ones given me, different as they could ever be.  That’s fine with me.  Whether you or I can or can’t, I know that God can hammer a straight nail!  Did you read those 2 verses in Ezra 9 yet?  Not sure what your translation says but mine says that ‘(God gives) a secure hold within His holy place, that our God may brighten our eyes and grant us a little reviving…'(ESV).  See where it says ‘secure hold’?  In the original Hebrew that phrase is really one word– nail or tent-peg.  God was promising His remnant people, returning from exile in Babylon, that He would nail them in securely, bind them tightly to Himself.

When in England we were renting a 15th-century manor house.  This house was built in the late 1400’s making it over 600 years old.  And we think our house back home in the States is ‘old’ having been built in 1945!  The Old Manor House has timber framing, post and beam construction with squared off and carefully fitted and joined timbers secured by large wooden pegs. It’s lasted century after century.

Like what God has done for us.  Tight and secure, carefully fitted and joined…by the death of His only Son, nailed to the cross.  Nails and pegs.  The nails that have left an eternal mark in Jesus’ hands and feet are the nails that keep us safe in Him not for 600 years but forever.  Nails that secured our forgiveness, salvation and future glory with Him in heaven.   Whether you can hammer a nail straight or not, He can.  He did.  He still does.  I must admit it, God is so good…at whatever He does!  Agreed?

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for your Jesus.  In His name.  Amen.


When I was a brand-new Christian, I suffered for too many years with a nagging doubt as to whether I was really a Christian. It wasn’t because of some on-going struggle with a certain horrific sin. Nevertheless, I couldn’t shake that nibbling at me with doubts that felt like a reprimand chewing me out for even daring to think that God would accept the likes of me. I had accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior, but maybe I didn’t say the right words or do enough good deeds–why was I feeling so miserable and here I’m supposed to be ‘filled with the joy of the Lord’. Right? Not how I felt. Not at all. As a matter of fact, the doubts would growl at me when I couldn’t sleep at night or when a very convicting evangelistic sermon was given, I just knew I must go forward…again! And I did…on 3 different occasions. Went forward and was even baptized again at one of the largest churches in the USA, along with over 100 others at the 2nd service that Sunday morning south of Chicago, in Indiana. I just felt so guilty, so much of the time. Until…until I read and digested verses like those found in John’s Gospel, the 8th chapter. It hit me like a ton of bricks (well, not that violently and fatally!)– the time to worry about my salvation was when I no longer cared about it or about Jesus or about anything having to do with God. When I didn’t want anything to do with Jesus, then I had something to worry about. God, you go your way and I’ll go mine. But that wasn’t me at all. I desperately wanted to be a child of God, my warts and all. I needed God. I always have, but I just didn’t know if He gave a hoot about me. Well, those insecurities about my eternal security lessened the more I heard God’s Word and the more time I spent with Him. Just like Jesus said, ‘He who belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God’ (John 8:47). If we hear Him, listen to the Lord, follow Him as best we can always getting right when we’ve gone wrong, wanting to know His Word, cherishing moments in the Bible whether in the morning, afternoon or late at night. Wanting Him is the best assurance He gives us of His salvation. Not my feelings of insecurity, my self-doubts put on Him. No. Read verse 47 again. Doesn’t that just ring true? Like a tuning fork is the Bible, tuning to the right note and the right pitch so we sing and play the right notes with that pure tone of the Lord. I’m glad I’m a child of God, and the more time I spend with Him in prayer and reading His Word, the less time I have to wonder and to doubt and just drive myself batty!