Hi friends. I apologize for the delay in posting about the study over the last couple of weeks so I am excited to be back this week.
I am slow moving this week but thankful for life. This does not go with the study but if you have been following my health journey,you know how hard things have been physically for me. That being said, yesterday I was able to be in my wheelchair and sit on the deck and soak up the sun. While that is simple to most, that was a big deal for me. It was marvelous and made me excited for the summer. Even though I know it won’t be easy at first, I am looking forward to the first dip in my pool. Not sure when that will happen but I’m thankful for the little glimmers of hope God brings my way. The Lord has been faithful to give me reasons to “hope a little more” with each day that comes my way. Thanks for all the prayers my dear friends. They are working and they mean so much to me.
Prayers of the faithful encourage the soul. This truth can also be attributed to Nehemiah’s situation as well.
Okay now back to the study. Yesterday was Memorial Day and it has always been known as the unofficial start of summer. One of my favorite things to do during the summer is read a good book and participate in a Bible study. This summer I of course am continuing to study through Nehemiah, and the timing could not be more perfect. While I am not living in the same circumstances as Nehemiah, I am experiencing adversity and so many things mentioned in the book mirrors what is going on in my own life. I love it when God works like that. This is what I like to call “a God thing.”
The evidence of God is also seen in a powerful way in the book of Nehemiah. After Nehemiah gets to Jerusalem he put together a plan and got to work. The very first thing the people repaired were the gates. With them being torn down that made the town and the people living there vulnerable to attack. As I have read about the building aspects from Nehemiah, the phrase “Guard your gates” keep coming to mind. One major way of combating the adversity that came their way was not only rebuilding the gates, but also having someone to stand guard at all times. When Nehemiah took on this task from the Lord he knew it would not be easy. Throughout the process there were many evil acts done to try to stop Nehemiah and his work. However, he did not give up or give in. He was Nehemiah strong. As soon as the work began with building and repairing the gates, attacks started coming from several evil men. As stated in Nehemiah 2:19, “But when Sanballat, Tobiah, and Geshem the Arab heard of our plan, they scoffed contemptuously. What are you doing? Are you rebelling against the king they asked.” He did not believe the lies of the bullies nor was he gullible to their ways. Even when everyone was exhausted from building the wall and the morale was low, Nehemiah did not stop the process. He instead beat the discouragement. After the attacks given in chapter 2, Nehemiah did what he had done from the beginning which was trust God and carry on. Earlier he encouraged the people that the gracious hand of God was upon them, and he did not lose that confidence when fiery darts headed their way. He boldly and confidently said to his enemies in 2:20, “The God of heaven will help us succeed. We, his servants, will start rebuilding this wall. But you have no share, legal right, or historic claim in Jerusalem.” Nehemiah trusted God completely and believed He would take care of them no matter how difficult the task ahead might be.
These types of situations and adversities are also applicable to us today. Therefore, we need to do all we can to love Christ above all else and be on guard spirituality against attacks that come our way. We need to guard our gates! How do we do this you may ask? The answer is pray, pray, pray and spend time getting to know Jesus through His Word. To trust Jesus like Nehemiah did, you have to know Him. When you know Him, you will love Him and desire to be obedient to Him. In your obedience He will strengthen and guide you. When God lays a passion on your heart like He did with Nehemiah, His gracious hand will be upon you and His plan will succeed.
Spend some time with the Lord today and ask Him for strength and trust. What areas in your life do you need to surrender to God and what is He calling you to do during this season? Do not be afraid. Press on and the Lord will see you through it.
To read the other posts in this series visit here.