In the world today, truth is being denied and suppressed.
To mainstream culture, there is no such thing as absolute truth. Those who claim such truth are deemed judgmental and unkind.
Because of this, many believers are suffering for their faith all over the world.
The current cultural climate is not much different than that of Nehemiah’s day. For Nehemiah, it must have been very difficult to continue the work the Lord commanded him. Especially amidst the sneering and mocking from the outside world.
When I think about Nehemiah’s story and the world today, I find that only two choices exist: we can conform to the culture or be set apart in Christ.
A question I ask myself is this: How can we find the courage to be set apart and walk in obedience to the Lord, like Nehemiah did?
Difficult situations can either move us toward a focus on ourselves and being accepted by the world, or move us toward greater surrender, trust, and faith in God. They can lead us to rely on our own strength, or give up control to the mighty Spirit of God, who gives us the courage to continue to obey.
Have you considered that the situation that seems impossible to navigate right now could be an opportunity for God to make His name great through your faith? It is true that, in our weakness God is magnified, for He desires to make His name known and glorified through it all.
Too many times I take things into my own hands and rely on my own strength. I seek myself first, and I fill my life with busyness to distract me from the eternal work God is tugging my heart toward. This from prayer and ministering to the heart of God and loving others with a pure heart.
I want to give up my tight grip and let God show me the way I should go, so He can do what only He can do.
Friend, God is calling us to more.
Nehemiah’s story encourages us to entrust our lives to God. It encourages us to believe that He will provide for us and make a way for us amid difficulty.
I look to the example of Jesus, for we are not called to be like each other but to imitate Christ and walk in the way of love.
First John 3:13–14 tells us plainly that not everyone will like us on this earth. In fact, some will despise us for believing in the truth of Christ. But as believers, we have come to know the love that saves. Our testimonies are reflective of those who have passed from death to life.
In Christ, we know peace and hope and purpose. When we face opposition of any kind, we can entrust ourselves to the One who judges justly. Jesus sacrificed His life for us, for He is our Helper and our Deliverer (1 Peter 2:23, Psalm 54:3).
Although we live in a world ruled by the evil one, we serve a God who is above all. He is the light shining in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome Him (John 1:5).
I thank God for His Word, for through it, we receive encouragement, power, and hope.
We have true accounts of how God has been faithful to His people. He has been faithful to support them and deliver them. We have read about how God ultimately sent Jesus to save all people from the wages of sin if they place their faith in Him.
Our God is the same yesterday, today, and forever.
Therefore, we can be strengthened by remembering what God has done for humanity and in our own lives. We know that He has been faithful to His people through all generations, and He will not stop now.
Matthew 6:32–33 has been a passage I continue to meditate on and turn back to when anxiety and fear begin to creep in and try to take Christ’s rightful place on the throne of my heart. Jesus tells us to seek the kingdom of God above all else and trust that the Lord will provide everything we need.
Instead of worrying about my basic needs being met and fighting to make things happen in my own strength, I can trust that God sees me. I can trust the He knows me, loves me, and will provide for me.
So, we have a choice to make. Will we trust Him? Will we believe that anything is possible with Him?
The Lord your God is in your midst, and He will deliver you (Zephaniah 3:17).
Whatever the situation you are in, God is all powerful.
Week 2 Challenge:
The people of Jerusalem faced opposition as they were working to rebuild the wall. What can you do to guard yourself against the attacks of the enemy? This could mean limiting your interaction with certain people, media, or even some kinds of food. Ask God to show you ways to guard yourself, your family, and your calling against the attacks of the enemy.
Week 2 Reading Plan:
Week 2 Memory Verse:
Join us as we study God’s Word using the From Broken to Restored study!
Grab your journal today and dive in!