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Day 10

“But when Sanballat the Horonite, Tobiah the Ammonite official and Geshem the Arab heard about it, they mocked and ridiculed us. ‘What is this you are doing?’ they asked. ‘Are you rebelling against the king?’ I answered them by saying, ‘The God of heaven will give us success. We his servants will start rebuilding, but as for you, you have no share in Jerusalem or any claim or historic right to it.’” Nehemiah 2:19,20
When we pursue our God-given vision, the enemy will seek to dissuade us by sowing doubt, intimidating us, and questioning our motives. In effect the enemy seeks to draw our attention to ourselves so that as we focus on ourselves and our own limitations, we lose focus of the One with whom all things are possible. After listening to the enemy and disobeying God in the garden of Eden, Adam and Eve became self-conscious and hid from God (see Genesis 3). The enemy knows that self-consciousness draws us away from God and into ourselves. His tactic is to distract us, sow doubt in …

Day 9

“Then I said to them, ‘You see the trouble we are in: Jerusalem lies in ruins, and its gates have been burned with fire. Come, let us rebuild the wall of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace.’ I also told them about the gracious hand of my God on me and what the king had said to me. They replied, ‘Let us start rebuilding.’ So they began this good work.” Nehemiah 2:17,18 Nehemiah motivates his people to rebuild Jerusalem by pointing out the problem, the significance of what it means for everyone, testifying to God’s grace upon him, the king’s favour toward him and inviting everyone to be part of the solution. This is great leadership. In very few words, Nehemiah describes the vision, why it needs to be fulfilled, why it is going to be accomplished, how it will be accomplished and what role everyone has to be a significant part of the fulfilment of the vision. If we do not understand the problem, we will not take hold of the vision – God’s solution to bring about transformatio…

Day 8

“So I went to Jerusalem and was there three days. Then I arose in the night, I and a few men with me. And I told no one what my God had put into my heart to do for Jerusalem. There was no animal with me but the one on which I rode. I went out by night by the Valley Gate to the Dragon Spring and to the Dung Gate, and I inspected the walls of Jerusalem that were broken down and its gates that had been destroyed by fire. Then I went on to the Fountain Gate and to the King’s Pool, but there was no room for the animal that was under me to pass. Then I went up in the night by the valley and inspected the wall, and I turned back and entered by the Valley Gate, and so returned. And the officials did not know where I had gone or what I was doing, and I had not yet told the Jews, the priests, the nobles, the officials, and the rest who were to do the work.” Nehemiah 2:11-16
Nehemiah told no one what his God had put on his heart to do for Jerusalem. He obeyed God in secret before making his plans…

Day 7

“When Sanballat the Horonite and Tobiah the Ammonite official heard about this, they were very much disturbed that someone had come to promote the welfare of the Israelites.” Nehemiah 2:10 As we look at the account of Nehemiah leading the people of Israel to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, we will see how the enemies of Israel respond immediately and attempt to stop the work. It does not please the enemy when we decide to follow God wholeheartedly. Satan does not want us to worship God and do His will. He is happy for us to be passive, apathetic and powerless and will always tempt us to worship created things rather than the Creator! Ultimately, the enemy wants you to worship him by serving yourself, created things and anything else other than God (see Matthew 4:8,9). It should not surprise us that when we decide to devote our hearts and lives to serving God that the enemy gets upset and will try to discourage us from pursuing God. Peter writes, “If you are insulted because of the name…

Day 6

“It pleased the king to send me; so I set a time. I also said to him, “If it pleases the king, may I have letters to the governors of Trans-Euphrates, so that they will provide me safe-conduct until I arrive in Judah? And may I have a letter to Asaph, keeper of the royal park, so he will give me timber to make beams for the gates of the citadel by the temple and for the city wall and for the residence I will occupy?” And because the gracious hand of my God was on me, the king granted my requests. So I went to the governors of Trans-Euphrates and gave them the king’s letters. The king had also sent army officers and cavalry with me.” Nehemiah 2:6-9
Extravagant favour! Nehemiah has faith in the grace of God, the realm of unmerited, extravagant favour and asks the king for authority to gain access to rulers and receive favour from them. Nehemiah taps into extravagant favour, asks boldly and it pleases the king to give Nehemiah everything he requests and more! The king not only grants Nehe…

Day 5

“The king said to me, “What is it you want?” Then I prayed to the God of heaven, and I answered the king, ‘If it pleases the king and if your servant has found favour in his sight, let him send me to the city in Judah where my ancestors are buried so that I can rebuild it.’ Then the king, with the queen sitting beside him, asked me, ‘How long will your journey take, and when will you get back?’ It pleased the king to send me; so I set a time.” Nehemiah 2:4-6
God put it on Nehemiah’s heart to rebuild the city of Jerusalem. Nehemiah recognised that God’s hand was upon him when he found incredible favour with the king. Nehemiah acted on the desires of his heart in full dependence on God. Even as the king asked him what he wanted, Nehemiah turned first to God to ensure that what he was about to do was according to God’s will. By faith, Nehemiah pursued God’s purpose for him as he depended on God, recognised God’s grace upon him, and boldly took hold of the favour he enjoyed with the king. …

Day 4

“Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man. I was cupbearer to the king.” Nehemiah 1:11 “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6). Nehemiah comes before God in humility. He recognises God’s greatness and approaches the Lord as His servant and as one who honours God’s name. His delight is in the fear of the Lord just like Jesus, the Branch of Jesse (Isaiah 11:3). Humility is dependence on God, rather than on self. As the king’s cupbearer and as one who knew what it meant to approach a king and to serve authority, Nehemiah lived in the natural what he lived in the spirit. John reminds us of this important principle when he writes, “anyone who does not love is brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen” (1 Jn 4:19)! Integrity is living in the natural what we live in the…