Spiritual leadership can be lonely, disappointing and frustrating at times (1). There are things you quite legitimately ”crave”. Your heart is in your ministry and you long to see real change in people. You look for ‘fruit’. For Micah, looking for godly people in the land was like looking for fruit and finding none (1). ”I’m like someone who goes to the garden to pick cabbages and carrots and corn And returns empty-handed, finds nothing for soup or sandwich or salad.” The Message. Micah was a Spirit-filled preacher with a powerful ministry (3:8), but he watched things go from bad to worse before his very eyes.
Verses 2 -4 paint a terrible picture of a society filled with corruption and falling apart. ”They’ve all become experts in evil. Corrupt leaders demand bribes. The powerful rich make sure they get what they want.” The Message. The ”best” of the people are like briers and thorns that cut and scratch (4). However, it goes on: ”But no longer: It’s exam time.” The Message. ”The day of your watchmen has come…’ (4). The watchmen were the prophets of Israel who warned of impending judgment (see Jer.6:17; Ezk.3:17).
Furthermore, all of this rottenness had spread into family life (5, 6). You couldn’t necessarily trust those closest to you not to stab you in the back.” Don’t trust your neighbor, don’t confide in your friend. Watch your words, even with your spouse. Neighborhoods and families are falling to pieces. The closer they are – sons, daughters, in-laws – The worse they can be. Your own family is the enemy.” ”Jesus quoted verse 6 to show that His coming to earth would divide families into those who believed in Him and those who did not (Matthew 10:34-38). Just as the sun heightens the contrast between brightness and shadow, so does Jesus heighten the contrast between faith and unbelief.” Tom Hale: The Applied Old Testament Commentary, p.1270.
So what do you do when you’re not seeing the things you came into the ministry to see; when your good results seem to lie somewhere between little and nothing. We live in an age that prizes measurable success, but what do you do when you can’t produce the favourable stats? In fact all the charts are plummeting in a southerly direction! Here’s what to do: take your stand alongside Micah and keep your eyes on God (7). Be steadfast and immoveable knowing that your labour in the Lord will not be in vain. Watch, hope and wait. ”But me, I’m not giving up. I’m sticking around to see what GOD will do. I’m waiting for God to make things right. I’m counting on God to listen to me.” The Message.
To quote a well known radio preacher: ”The word for today is…
”But me, I’m not giving up.” ”