Today is Your Day to Say "No" to Fear and "Yes" to God
When all our enemies heard about this, all the surrounding nations were afraid and lost their self-confidence, because they realized that this work had been done with the help of our God (Nehemiah 6:16).
When I first studied the book of Nehemiah, I wondered why the book just didn’t end here. We are fifty-two days in and the wall is completed! Nehemiah finished the job the Lord gave him in less than two months! This chapter in and of itself could be the climax of a major motion picture, it is that exciting! It is most definitely a high-point in the life of Nehemiah and all of us who carry our faith in God share in his victory.
This journey Nehemiah is one that speaks to the reality of doing what God asks of us. In the words of Judith Briles,
God may not provide us with a perfectly ordered life, but what He does provide is Himself, His presence, and open doors that bring us closer to being productive, positive and realistic.
Ezra, Nehemiah and all the rebuilding Jews faced constant obstacles. They faced the threat of annihilation at the hands of the people surrounding them and as we see here, even some of their own were against them. From a spiritual level, this chapter represents what happens whenever we endeavor to do the work of the Lord.
The enemy does not want you to be successful.
Can you face that reality? Does it make you want to quit? Does it make you second guess what God really asked you to do? That’s exactly where the enemy wants you. He wants you scared and doubtful. He will come at you again and again and again – by whatever means necessary to achieve that end because he knows fear stops us. In the words of author Jon Acuff,
Fear will never tell you it’s time to do the thing you’re afraid to do.
There is a reason we take so much encouragement from Nehemiah’s journey. It shows us if he can do it, we can too. His life confirms that when we live for the things of God, we are blessed. We won’t be without struggles, but the Lord will be with us, seeing us to the other side. Even if we feel bruised and battered by the time we get there, we will be stronger and more capable of displaying the truth that Christ came for all of us.
As our passage proclaims, we will come out victorious. When God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31)
Today is the day you remind your emotions who is in charge. Today is the day you rein in your mind so it no longer spins off into unfruitful, dark directions. Today is the day the Lord is waiting to show you the plans, the hope, the future He has for you. It is your day to take a stand, in confidence, knowing victory is on the way. The enemy doesn’t want you to be successful, but the Creator of the Universe does. Who can say no to that?
Make time for a quiet moment, especially in a stressful situation, to read about what the Lord does through Nehemiah and be encouraged.
Heavenly Father, never has the choice been so clear – it is either my failure or success on the line. It is all up to You and I need every bit of Your power and strength to face my situation and tell it to move. By faith I claim that it will. Give me the perspective to see how You are working in and through me and believe in the best outcome. Also, give me Your patience to wait for Your response. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
Further Reading: Nehemiah 4, 6-7, Romans 8