The more I read the book of Nehemiah the more I become encouraged in the daily building of my life. While we were worshipping, God had already began preparing me for the discouraging news I would receive when I went home from my mountain top experience with the believers in my community.
You see God had used our pastor to speak on discouragement. He talked about how Nehemiah delt with discouragement when rebuilding the walls of the Jerusalem city that had be been torn down completely to smashed pieces of burnt smokey rubble. He talked about the opposition that came from the enemy of our soul. The enemy came in the form of Sanballat. "When he had heard that we were rebuilding the wall , he became angry and was greatly incensed." ( Nehemiah 4:1). The Enemy of our soul does the same with us. His Tactics have never changed since this time in history. Just when we begin to rise out of the smokey ashes, he becomes angry. He begins to try to tear us down with discouraging words. We need to expect his opposition against us.
Nehemiah 4:2, Sanballat and Tobiah tried this with Nehemiah. " What are those feeble Jews doing? Will they restore their wall? Will they offer sacrifices? Will they finish in a day? Can they bring the stones back to life from those heaps of rubble - burned as they are? verse 3 says, Tobiah the ammonite, who was at his side, said," What they are building- if even a fox cimbed upon it, he would break down their wall of stones!
Do you see how the enemy was trying to tear them down with his words? How is the enemy trying to tear you down with words right now?
What did Nehemiah do with these tearing down words? What should we do? He was an awesome man of prayer! I love his prayer here becaus he isvery bold against the enemy. Here is his prayer:
4:4-6 "Hear us, O our God, for we are despised. Turn their insults back on their own heads. give them over as plunder in a land of captivity. 5. Do not cover up their their guilt or blot out their sins from your sight, for they have thrown insults in the face of the builders.
Nehemiah prayed against his enemy!! Do you pray against your enemy?
The enemy was not done with Nehemiah yet. He tried his second tactic ; Distraction.
In Nehemiah 6:2 Sanballat and and Geshem sent me this message:" Come,let us meet together in one of the villages on the plain of Ono." I love Nehemiah's reply. But they were scheming to harm me; so I sent them this reply:I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you ? This happened 5different times and 5different times Nehemiah did not let the enemy distract. He held fast and stayed firm to see the wall completed.
Where is the enemy distracting you?
In my time of discouragement, our pastor had said these two things. 1. In the building process: Keep praying and keep building. Fight the enemy of your soul in this way and he will have no other choice but to flee from your building project. It only took Nehemiah 52 days to complete the rebuilding of this torn down rubble.
Heavenly Father, How I praise you for times of discouragement, in these times I really see your mighty hand at work in me and in the rebuilding of my life. Thank you for using these things in my life to shape and mold me into the image of your Son. It is in the mighty name of Jesus I pray Amen.