So I read this passage, and the first thing that came to mind was “ain’t always the way?”
They get back to Jerusalem after a a pretty gruesome time of it and start rebuilding. Folks start rubber necking and wander over, offering to ‘help.’
Now, I reckon they probably had some fairly sinister intentions from the very beginning. I reckon they probably weren’t too keen on this people returning to the land. I reckon they were probably fairly content with the order things had taken during the exile, and the last thing they wanted was Jerusalem getting rebuilt and the Israelites having any sort of stability and control in the area once more. None of that is said, but it all feels like a natural response, right?
Maybe their offer to help was just… I don’t know, at best an attempt to get on the good side of the people rebuilding this once powerful city. Maybe they were just wanting insider information. You know, keep close. But you know at least a few of them were actively seeking to disrupt the effort.
You know this because their immediate response to being turned away is to start a campaign of disruption from the outside. They start harassing. They start threatening. They probably start attacking supply trains. They make people afraid to work on the city.
AND they write a letter “telling” on them as soon as someone is in power who might take their side.
And my first thought was “ain’t it always the way.”
It feels like every time we start to build something good, there’s someone waiting to get in the way. Someone waiting to tear it down. Someone who wants what we’ve managed to scrape together all for themselves.
There’s just one thing to do: keep building. Just like the Israelites. You’ve gotta get back to building. Or as Dory says: just keep swimming.
Just keep moving forward.