So we built the wall, and the entire wall was joined together up to half its height, for the people had a mind to work. (Nehemiah 4:6)
Provocation is often used in the negative, which means causing offense or angry tendencies. It is obvious that a lady who is provocative in her appearance wrecks serious sexual havoc on men, which, in turn brings provoked reaction; this has invariably contributed to incessant rapes and sexual assaults in the society. However, there can be positive provocation. If the good you see others do motivates and encourages you to want to try to do same or even do better, that is positive provocation.
Provocation that is positively motivated is allowed, both secularly and sacredly. While the enemies of God's people, Samballat, Tobiah, and the rest were busy provoking the children of God, with the aim of discouraging, disorientating and dismaying them from furthering their efforts at rebuilding the broken and battered walls, the people of God turned the provocation to a positive one by ignoring the antics of the enemies, and focusing on the task before them. No doubt, negatively motivated provocations will accost you, whether you like it or not, but you must not be negatively provoked *(Romans 12:21)*.
Let the good somebody does or has done provoke you positively to do even more, not necessarily in the spirit of rivalry or competition, rather to complement other people's efforts. In well doing, the Bible charges us not to be weary or relenting. Rather, we should be more provoked to do more because it is highly rewarding *(Galatians 6:9)*. Instead of seeing others' achievements, efforts, accolades and feats or exploits as threats or intimidations, you should turn these to positive provocations to aspire and perspire in other to achieve your set goal, ultimately giving glory to the One Who deserves it.
Stay positively charged, in Jesus' name.
1. O Lord, I receive the inspiration to be positively provoked, in Jesus' name.
2. I refuse to be intimidated by the negative provocations from people around me, known and unknown, in Jesus' name.
3. Pray that people would begin to see the difference between religion and redemption, so that they can come to Christ for salvation, on this world religion day.
EXTRA READING FOR TODAY: Genesis 43 - 44 & Matthew 21