Police shootings here, terrorist attacks there. The headlines are overwhelming, and frankly it often seems that evil is winning the war over good in our day.
It wasn’t a completely dissimilar situation in ancient Israel when Nehemiah rebuilt the wall around Jerusalem. It was a good and right action on Nehemiah’s part; one that we would think would have the full support and protection from God. However, it did not go unopposed.
Sanballat and his band of hooligans constantly taunted and threatened the workers. They took every opportunity to discourage and dishearten those who were working night and day to accomplish the task. Things were so bad that Nehemiah had to post armed guards to protect the laborers. But the thing that Nehemiah did that stood out the most to me was this:
After I looked things over, I stood up and said to the nobles, the officials and the rest of the people, “Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your families, your sons and your daughters, your wives and your homes.” (Nehemiah 4:14)
In the middle of overwhelming fear, discouragement, and opposition, a fearless leader stood up and told his people to not be afraid, but to remember their great and awesome God. With their minds set firmly on the knowledge that there is a sovereign God in heaven defending their cause, they could can peace and again focus on the task at hand.
Are you fearful of the world around you? Discouraged by the struggles within your own four walls? Remember that the great and awesome Lord is with you! –Dave
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