HAVE YOU FOUND YOUR PLACE IN THE WALL?
(Written by Sheila Gail Landgraf)
We have been pondering the following scripture passage found in Nehemiah 2:11-18:
11 - So I came to Jerusalem and was there three days.
12 - Then I arose in the night, and I and a few men with me; I told no one what my God had put in my heart to do at Jerusalem, nor was there any animal with me except the one on which I rode.
13 - And I went out by night through the Valley Gate to the Serpent Well and The Refuse Gate, and viewed the walls of Jerusalem which were broken down and its gates which were burned with fire.
14-Then I went on to The Fountain Gate and to The King's Pool, but there was not room for the animal that was under me to pass.
16-And the officials did not know where I had gone or what I had done; I had not yet told the Jews, the Priests, The Nobles, The Officials, or The Others Who Did the Work.
17- Then I said to them: "You see the distress we are in, how Jerusalem lies waste, and its gates are burned with fire. Come and let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer be a reproach."
18-And I told them of the Hand of My God which had been good upon me and also of the king's words that he had spoken to me. So they said, "Let us rise up and build." Then they sat their hands to do this good work.
He sees how broken we are.
He sees the decay and the rot of sin.
He knows what shape we have let ourselves become, a shape unfit for protecting a righteous kingdom.
Now is the time to hear what He is saying to the churches.
Now is the time to listen and obey.
He speaks of a vision of restoration, oh that our hearts might be willing to hear!
He will walk again through the dark valley and through the earth full of forgiven sinners, those like you and me, those He willingly died for.
When He begins to re-enter that Valley Gate again, there will be times on earth of trials and tribulations like there has never been before, or ever will be again.
In verse 16 Nehemiah says "The officials did not know where I had gone, or what I was doing, because as yet, I had said nothing to the Jews or the priests or nobles or officials or any others who would be doing the work."
Even today, as He speaks from Heaven, He doesn't always speak to the rulers and famous religious leaders, but often He speaks to the poor, the humble, the gentle, the common, loving people of God who are following His lead and listening to His voice in their lowly every day lives. He reveals His truths to His faithful followers, the ones who stay with Him till the end through thick and thin and trials and tribulations; he continues to speak to the true ones that He has called.
When Jesus Christ returns to earth, just as when Nehemiah turned around from following and surveying the destruction of the walls; one of the first things Jesus's eyes may see, will be the same picture that Nehemiah saw back in those days - He may see Jerusalem lying in ruins.
That Holy City that He loved will be destroyed and it will lie in ruins. Jerusalem's gates may again be burned with fire, but Our Lord will turn to His people and say (just as Nehemiah said to his men) "Come - let us rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, and we will no longer be in disgrace!"
And "So they began the good work," in the days of Nehemiah - in the days of Christ, and so God's work continues in the days of our lives.
What a beautiful picture of the face of Nehemiah, reflecting the face of Christ, in the hope of restoration of a Kingdom and a Nation.
All this is amazing to think about and wonderful to look forward to; but how can we apply this story in a practical way to our own lives in this present age?
Nehemiah put much prayer and thought into this work of God. He only listened to what the Lord had to say, so he only did things the way the Lord wanted them to be done. He told the people to start right where they were living. They each were instructed to build the walls along the portion of the city that they lived the closest to.
Where are you living?
How do you need to build?
What walls are broken in your own life?
You need only to look at your own front door to find the starting place you have in The Kingdom of God.
Start today, right where you are living. Follow the great instructor, Jesus Christ; and begin to repair the walls of your life.
If every man in every city did this, the cities of our country would be healed.
If every city did this the states of our country would be healed.
If every state did this the country would be healed.
If every country did this the world would be healed.
If we want to repair the world it all has to start at each individual believer's front door.
What an inspiration for the church today. This isn't a complicated and complex plan as many might think!
We just have to start with our own place in the wall. We live out a witness in our own homes and our own families, and our own neighborhoods. We stand for God in our work places, and our social activities in the community.
We simply have to start in the place where God has put us, and we can begin to grow out from our own home base.
Have you been waiting?
Jesus says "Come - Let us rebuild!"