BOTTOM LINE: Nehemiah had amazing patience; he had prayed for 4 months when his time to approach King Artaxerxes came to fruition, and even then, his first reaction was to PRAY.
QUESTION: How is Our City? the state of Our Church? Our Marriage? Our Relationship w/ our children? etc…
Nehemiah had been praying for 4 months; he had fasted; he had planned; and in chapter 2, we see King Artaxerxes ask Nehemiah was he was sad. [fyi … it wasn’t common to appear “down in the dumps” in front of the King. They often took that as that person had something to hide] He shared his heart and his burden for his home nation, and the King granted him the blessing to go.
Unlike Ezra, Nehemiah asked for an escort, which is needed. The rulers in Jerusalem wanted nothing good for God’s people and so they were not excited about Nehemiah coming to rebuild.
Nehemiah Prayed for God’s promises to come to fruition. Nehemiah planned on how best to be a part of God’s plan. Nehemiah made himself available to be used by God as a part of His plan.
We’ve got to make sure we’re:
– Studying God’s Word
– Praying for God to do what He’s promised He will do
– Asking for guidance as to how we can be involved in His Plan
– Praying … and Moblizing into action …
Nehemiah 2:17 … “17 … Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace.”
ILLUSTRATION: God’s Name is Still At Stake
Today … God’s Name is still at stake isn’t it? Not so much in a city w/ walls and gates … but much more so now in the lives of His people … who are the New Temple of the Holy Spirit …
And in 1 sense … we have to ask ourselves:
– What walls or what Gates need some work in our lives?
– Does our MARRIAGE need some work? Maybe some minor repairs … maybe even some major work like Jerusalem needed?
– Maybe our KIDS … and our Parenting … and the relationship we have with them?
– Maybe our EYES need a Gate … or a Guard over them and we’re going to take more seriously the kinds of things we watch and look at.
– Maybe our EARS need a Gate and we’re going to be more strict about the kinds of things we choose to listen to?
ILLUSTRATION: Jesus is the BEST Re-Builder
Maybe our life is literally in Ruins … we sort of feel like Jerusalem, and our walls have been knocked down and our Gates have been burned down … and we honestly aren’t sure we have any HOPE of doing anything about it …
I pray you can hear these next few minutes … we have access to a Leader that is even better at rebuilding than NEHEMIAH was … we have One who is more zealous for God’s name to be made Great … and for God’s Kingdom to come … and for God’s Will to be done …
The same zeal that led Jesus to go to the cross for us so that all who would exchange our lives w/ Him could be restored and reconciled back into a righteous standing w/ God … and we can now be forgiven of our sins … made new in God’s image … and discover a HOPE again that we would not have otherwise.