Zechariah 4:6b - Man's Flicker or God's Flame?

Zec.4:6b: Man's Flicker or God's Flame?

Zec 4:6b (KJV)  Not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, 
saith the LORD of hosts 

Many people believe that to survive in this world a person must 
be tough, strong, unbending, and harsh. But God says, "Not by might 
nor by power, but by my Spirit." The key words are "by my Spirit." 
It is 'only' through God's Spirit that anything of lasting value is 
accomplished. As you live for God, determine not to trust in your own strength 
or abilities. Instead, depend on God and work in the power of his 
Spirit! [Life Application SB mod] 

As activity increases, and men become successful in doing any 
work for God, there is danger of trusting to human plans and methods. 
 There is a tendency to pray less, and to have less faith. Like 
the disciples, we are in danger of losing sight of our dependence on 
God, and seeking to make a saviour of our activity. We need to look 
constantly to Jesus, realizing that it is His power which does the work. 

Not the amount of labor performed or its visible results but the 
spirit in which the work is done makes it of value with God. COL397 

In all we do, we are to rely not on our own might or power, but 
on the Spirit of God. If we serve in His strength, nothing that we 
do for the LORD will be a "small thing." God will use even the 
smallest in a great way. [The 365-Day Devotional Commentary] 

Those who have served in the power of God's Holy Spirit will 
find their works survive and their reward great.  Those who 
accomplished tasks in the strength of their own flesh will find those works 
burned away, as it were. . . . . Labor for God's highest glory, in the 
power of His Spirit.  [In His Time; Walk With Wisdom] 

The Spirit is the power source for all people on mission for 
God. [Disciple SB] 

When we consider worship, we need to remember that it is only 
through the Spirit of God that we may know His will and what should be 
His worship. Should a person be the greatest singer of the day, very 
professional with a marvelous style and range, and come to perform in a 
service of worship to God Almighty, without the presence and power of 
His Spirit, no honor will come to God and no true blessing to God's 
people. Worship is only accomplished through God's Spirit. Our own ideas 
and procedures, bereft of the Spirit's guidance, are worthless in 
His worship. Each one of us needs to so prepare our hearts before 
and during corporate worship that we depend entirely upon His 
precious Spirit. Make that a habit of preparation before each Lord's Day. 
 [In His Time; Walk With Wisdom re 1Co.12:13] 

Working Versus Striving
Your greatest obstacle in fulfilling God's purposes in your life 
is the skills you have acquired to perform well in your business 
life. One of the great paradoxes in Scripture relates to our need to 
depend on the Lord; yet at the same time, we're instructed to use the 
talents and abilities God gives us to accomplish the work He gives us to 
do. It has been one of the most difficult principles to live out. 
How do we know that what we achieve is by the power of the Holy 
Spirit in our life versus our own abilities, and is there a difference? 
When we reach a level of excellence and performance in our fields, it 
actually becomes an obstacle to seeing God's power manifest in our work. 
What we naturally do well becomes the object of our trust. When this 
happens, God retreats. You see, God allows us to develop skills, but 
these must be continually yielded to God's Spirit. There will be times 
when God will use these skills to accomplish His purposes. There will 
be other times that God will not use any of our skills just to 
ensure that we know it is by His power that we can do anything.  
It is the oxymoron of all oxymorons for Christian 
businesspeople. Learning not to act until God shows you to act is a sign of 
maturity in God. "Do not lean on the natural skill which you have been 
given. Let God manifest Himself in what you are doing," said a mentor 
who has learned this balance of skill and walking with God. "You 
must almost restrain from doing those things you know you are prone 
to do and actually go against them."  
I was learning this lesson recently when I was asked to 
participate in a large event that would give great exposure and much needed 
financial increase to my ministry. It made all the sense in the world to 
participate. Then I prayed with a friend and asked the Lord His mind on it. 
The Lord showed us this was not His plan for me. I declined the 
Ask God to teach you what it means to walk according to the 
power of the Holy Spirit in your business life. Develop a listening 
ear to the small voice inside that wants to direct your efforts by 
His Spirit. [Today God is First by Os Hillman]