They will rebuild the perpetual ruins
and restore the places that were desolate;
they will reestablish the ruined cities,
the places that have been desolate since ancient times.
One profound truth that my heart was open to while I was reading this chapter was the fact that everyone built. Everyone was involved in the work. One person did not do it all. One person did just enough, and the next person picked up from there, and so on. I wish the body of Christ could return to this, where we do not tear each other down, speak ill of, or be envious of each other, but where we, as members of one body, come together and edify and build each other up.
Father, may we be instruments of unity waiting for your return.
God is the great Redeemer and Restorer. He promised restoration for the Jews when they returned from captivity, and He was true to His word. Let me pause here and encourage someone: God is restoring what you’ve lost or what was taken away from you. I pray today that mercy speaks to you.
Let’s circle back. God kept His word of restoration for His children when they returned, and when they got back, their land was in ruins. Their temple was destroyed, their homes taken over by foreigners, and their fields and vineyards overrun by weeds and wild animals. I can only imagine the desolation with which they were confronted.
We serve a God who can never be outnumbered or overwhelmed by the issues in our lives. I can imagine how overwhelmed they must have felt, and how they wondered how it was all going to come together. God had a plan, and in His kindness and goodness He invited them to partner with Him in the rebuilding of their land.
As His children, God calls us daily to work with Him in restoring and rebuilding the lives of people around us. As His children, we are co-builders and laborers in His vineyard, which has been affected by pain, sorrow, and sin.
People’s lives are in ruins. Our nations have become desolate places filled with every form of corruption and evil. People no longer have regard for their fellow humans. Kind words and actions are very scarce. Ungodliness seems to be the order of the day, and evil is on the rise.
I live in Nigeria, and right where I am, in my little corner of the earth, I can be God’s hands and feet of restoration. It can be as simple as a smile to a stranger or a “God bless you” to someone in need of it. It can be community service or going out of my way to make sure something in my community works. I can decide to be honest and transparent at my job, thereby reducing corruption. I can decide to always obey traffic rules and other laws set by the government so that accidents and the loss of life are lessened.
There are several acts I can engage in to make sure God’s plans and purposes are fulfilled, right where I am.
Our verses today posed a problem: the walls of Jerusalem needed to be rebuilt. God did not ask angels in heaven to do the work. He did not compel skilled men or cedar from Tyre. No! He used ordinary men and women who chose to be available to God.
I want to always be available to God for whatever He needs done in my time.
I don’t want to be so overwhelmed with what is not right that my senses are dulled as to how God can use me, like He used the people in today’s verses to rebuild the walls. As I write this, I am asking God to make me sensitive to His work around me. I do not want to be selfish. I want to work with God where, and when, He needs me.
God desires that we serve as His hands, ears, feet, and eyes in our little corners of the earth.
May we always, dear Father, be found at work alongside you. Amen.
Join us for our NEW Bible study!!!
Join us as we dive into God’s Word using our newest study, From Broken to Restored, digging deeper into the book of Nehemiah together!