Nehemiah was used of God for a very important task at a very important time. He, along with the people of Israel, was called to labor in a very important construction project. As the construction foreman of the “Wall Rebuilding Project”, Nehemiah was challenged with the overwhelming task of securing Jerusalem, Israel’s capital city. The whole project was opposed by many and no doubt would even find many naysayers in its ranks. As a leader, Nehemiah needed laborers who would loyally commit themselves to the task. I can't imagine the fear and anxiety he must have felt. On top of all the “people problems” there no doubt were “project problems” as the job was grueling and arduous.
These were discouraging days for Nehemiah and I am sure he was disheartened at times. The opponents did all they could to exhaust him both physically and mentally. It seemed as if all odds were against the completion of the task . . . and yet Nehemiah pressed on.
How did Nehemiah stay focused and not quit? How did he withstand the distractions and discouragement that many adversaries threw his way? What did he do with the fear, doubt and worry he felt? How did he keep from compromising what he knew God had called and prepared him to do? We have a glimpse into what kept Nehemiah committed to this building project in this one book of the Bible named after him.
Nehemiah 6:9 gives us a glimpse of what, or should I say Who, kept him dedicated to his calling. Don't miss all of what Nehemiah could have done . . . he could have broke down . . . he could have quit . . . he could have retaliated. He didn't poll the people or take a vote . . . he didn't have a pity party or pitch a fit . . . he didn't even get angry or make accusations against God. What did Nehemiah do? He pleaded with the holy God for strength to do the work God had called Him to do. Nehemiah was not relying on his own fleshly abilities to complete the task at hand. He understood that he was incapable of completing the wall around Jerusalem. He realized that in and of himself that he could not lead the people on his own. Nehemiah recognized that his help came from God. He prayed, “. . . Now therefore, O God, strengthen my hands (verse 9b). He trusted that God would complete the work through him according to God's will.
Think about it, each of us has a part of God’s Kingdom plan. There will be distractions, disappointments, and detours. We should be like Nehemiah, for we may also call upon the same Lord that Nehemiah prayed to and the same God can give us the same strength He gave Nehemiah. Our help comes from Almighty God; He is our only hope of true success. The supreme example for us is the Lord Jesus Christ, who faced the greatest challenge of all when He went to the cross to pour out His blood for our sins. May we find comfort in His example of perseverance, faith and strength. Let's remember that He is there for us today and He will see us through our tomorrows.
Heavenly Father, please help me to trust You for the project You have called me to do. I need Your strength to complete the work You have given me today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen