Ezra stands at a distance and ponders his options. They need safety as they travel. And he knows someone with a big army. A king with a very reliable protection service. But he’s cornered. He proclaimed the greatness of his God, told the king that they have an incredible God, a Creator, who is big enough to keep them safe, one who looks after those who honour and love him. Now the rubber hits the road. If he goes back to the king and ask for an army to protect them it’ll look bad. What will the king think then of Ezra’s all-powerful God? Hmm. He’s torn. Would be so much easier… no one could blame him… why not… and yet… but… no. He’s knows deep within his spirit, he’d better do the wise thing. It scares him but he’s spoken the words so he’d better start living the life. All well and good pronouncing about his God, time to step into the shoes of the faithful, a time for trust now. One thing to proclaim, quite another to put things into practice. He steels himself, raises his eyes to the heavens and says a silent prayer. He’ll get the people to fast and pray, to dedicate themselves to their God, the one who is more powerful than a thousand armies. And then they’ll travel and trust him.
Ezra 8 vv 21- 23