Nehemiah’s prayer showed that he remembered what God had said concerning His people. Steeped in humility and contrition, it was a plea for national and personal forgiveness for the choices that had provoked God to fulfill His word against a people who’d forsaken Him. But the prayer also focused on the promise. If those who’d turned their backs on God would again seek the Lord and follow Him, then He would restore them to their homeland. This prayer, furthermore, did not stop with recognition of what God had done and was still able to do, it went a step further, linking Nehemiah to the process of the fulfillment of God’s word.
Nehemiah was willing to be a part of the promise.
He was willing to set aside his comfortable position as cup bearer to bear the burden of God’s people. He was willing to take action so that God could use him to be a part of the solution. He was willing to work with God to bring about the promise of God.
He prayed. He fasted. He interceded. Then, he put feet on the faith he had in God’s word. He went before the king he served and requested to go rebuild the walls of the city of God. He presented a plan, and the king granted the petition, permitting Nehemiah to go restore Jerusalem—preparation for the people Nehemiah believed God would bring home.
Seeing Nehemiah’s faith, we must ask ourselves if we are working with God regarding His promises. Do we say that we are waiting when in fact we simply aren’t willing? Idleness is not the same as stillness. Could it be that the spiritual words we use to define our present state might merely be excuses to bypass the tasks of service and sacrifice?
If God promised prosperity, to the church, are we giving to be a part of that promise? If God said we’d be fruitful and the gifts of the spirit would operate through us, are we exercising those gifts in the obscure areas of life, or are we waiting to be called to the center stage? If God said there would be a mighty revival for our churches, are we waiting for guests to just show up and demand to be a part of our congregation, or are we actively inviting and pursuing people?
Often God’s promises are yoked to the potential that lies within us. When we’ve humbled ourselves in prayer and fasting, our part in God’s plan becomes much clearer, and our willingness to stretch out of our comfort zone becomes much more feasible. Our outlook is one that is willing to ACT. And Action is something God honors.
Tip/Tidbit: What does this kind of faith look like? If you’re Abraham, you pick up your tent stakes and go. If you’re Noah, you build the ark. If you’re David, you sling the stone. If you’re Peter, you order lame legs to walk. But you aren’t these heroes of faith. You are your own hero of faith. And faithful heroes are well-rewarded with Jesus saying, “Well DONE.” This doesn’t indicate works for salvation or righteousness. It refers to works of faith. FAITHFUL SERVANT. Service that acts because of faith in God. What promises do you hold in your hand? What are you doing to show that you believe God’s word? Today, take a step of faith that reveals your expectancy.