Pop Pop Epistle #142 – Happy Birthday Ezra

Dear Ezra,

Happy Birthday #2 baby girl. You’ve done so much growing up in the past year. I’m looking forward to watching all the growing up you will do this next year.

Here’s something that you may already know. Your name means “helper.” Now I’m not sure if your parents named you after the Ezra in the Bible or if they just liked the name, but the Ezra in Scripture was most definitely a helper. Here are two ways that this played out in his life.

He helped the people of God return home – God’s people had been a part of the Babylonian Captivity. The Jews had been deported from Jerusalem and exiled for about 70 years almost 1000 miles from their homeland.. Ezra, along with Zerubbabel and Nehemiah, were instrumental in the return of the exiles.

He helped the people of God return to Word of God – Ezra loved Scripture. And he loved passing on his love for Scripture to others. His passion for God’s Word led to a national declaration of repentance and a renewed hunger among God’s people to live lives that were pleasing to the Lord.

Ezra 7:9-10 sums up these two things about Ezra…

 For on the first day of the first month he began to go up from Babylonia, and on the first day of the fifth month he came to Jerusalem, for the good hand of his God was on him.  For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel.

But note the key phrase in the middle of those verses: “for the good hand of his God was on him.”  The reason that Ezra was so effective in his ministry of helping was because God’s hand was upon him.

I will be praying as you grow up that God’s hand will indeed be upon you and that He will use you as a mighty helper among God’s people. In the meantime, it is my joy and pleasure to be your Pop Pop.

Never forget that you are very loved!

Pop Pop


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