One of my favorite things to do in the world is to fly airplanes. Not RC airplanes but real airplanes! I love the rush I get when I turn the airplane facing down the runway knowing I’m about to be take flight. I know that when I reach a certain speed I can pull back on the yoke and the airplane will lift up into the air and fly. Every time this happens it seems magical even though I’ve flown a plane lots of times there is just something about taking flight that captivates me.
There is one part about flying that many people don’t know about and without it, the airplane couldn’t lift up into the air. This part is called resistance. When the airplane starts going down the runway airflow starts to increase over the wings which eventually when going fast enough creates something called lift. The airplane has to face resistance going into the wind in order to take flight. See, resistance is what causes the plane to fly. Without the resistance of the wind the airplane would not leave the ground.
In the same way resistance in our lives can do the same thing even though it may not feel like it in the moment. How often have you been faced with a circumstance and wondered how in the world can anything good come out of this? Or is this situation even going to help thrust me forward?
There was a guy named Nehemiah who had a calling placed on his life by God to go and rebuild the wall of Jerusalem. This wall that surrounded the city was huge! It had been torn down and Nehemiah felt a burden to go repair it which he set off to do.
Even though Nehemiah went to rebuild the wall, do you think everything was smooth sailing for him? No way! Nehemiah faced some serious resistance by a guy named Sanballat 🙂 and a group of people trying to stop the wall from being built. Nehemiah, even though he was doing what God told him, was facing resistance.
When Sanballat heard that we were rebuilding the wall, he became angry and was greatly incensed. He ridiculed the Jews, 2 and in the presence of his associates and the army of Samaria, he said, “What are those feeble Jews doing? Will they restore their wall? Will they offer sacrifices? Will they finish in a day? Can they bring the stones back to life from those heaps of rubble—burned as they are?” (Nehemiah 4:1-2)
Not only was Nehemiah being mocked by these people and Sanballat it got even worse for him. The resistance only grew and became more intense for Nehemiah the closer he got to finishing the wall.
7 But when Sanballat, Tobiah, the Arabs, the Ammonites and the people of Ashdod heard that the repairs to Jerusalem’s walls had gone ahead and that the gaps were being closed, they were very angry. 8 They all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and stir up trouble against it.9 But we prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to meet this threat. (Nehemiah 4:7-9)
So Sanballat and this army didn’t just mock and plot evil plans against Nehemiah, they actually did it! These crazy people were going and they were fighting against Nehemiah and everything that he was trying to accomplish.
What happened was, the wall was completed even faster! Nehemiah was able to defend the wall and complete what God told him to do.
So on October 2 the wall was finished—just fifty-two days after we had begun. (Nehemiah 6:15)
52 days was all it took to build this massive wall! That’s something only the power of God can do right there!
God took what was trying to hurt Nehemiah and used it to build the wall faster. God turned the violence and fighting for good. You could say, the resistance was flipped and used to the advantage of Nehemiah.
Have you ever thought about the resistance you are facing? I know in my own life I’ve had people tell me how crazy I was for doing what God told me. Has anyone ever told you that? Are you facing any kind of resistance currently? Is someone constantly belittling you? Are you struggling in your finances barely getting by? Is that boss constantly putting you down? Does every door you try to walk through get closed in your face?
Remember, the airplane doesn’t leave the ground without the resistance. Resistance is what allows the airplane to reach its potential. Resistance is what caused Nehemiah to finish the wall even faster. Resistance is what God is using to get you to where you need to be.
If we never faced any kind of resistance, we would never be filled with the strength we need, the courage we need, the faith we need or the ability to press forward that we need to complete what God wants for us in the future.
I’m asking you today, what resistance are you facing? Does it look like the resistance will overtake you? Does it look like it’s over?
God is working even if it looks and feels like he’s not. Be open to what God is trying to teach you and be slow to act allowing the Holy Spirit to lead you. I’m telling you, if you’ve got resistance in your life it’s because something AMAZING is coming your way. Don’t give up, stay focused on the finish line and not the bad that’s in front of you. It’s not complete until your circumstance is good. God promises us this in Romans 8:28 and Genesis 50:20.
28And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)
20You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. (Genesis 50:20)
- What resistance are you dealing with right now?
- Does it look and feel like the enemy is winning?
- Like Nehemiah, what’s a way you can keep pressing forward?
- Where you put those two scriptures above to be remind yourself that God is working?
- Like the airplane is built to withstand resistance for flight, you are built that way to. What’s one bad habit that’s stopping you from taking flight like a negative mindset or something similar that you can stop doing right now?
- I you are not facing resistance currently, what can you do to prepare for when the resistance comes?