Tag Archives: Nehemiah 4:8-9

Hedging my bet?

Hedging a bet?

“They all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and stir up trouble against it.  But we prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to meet this threat.”  Nehemiah 4:8-9.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading; Nehemiah 3-4, and Luke 23.

Trusting God requires action on our part.  Sometimes that “action” is inaction…….let go, let God.  Other times that “action” is some direct involvement.

In today’s verses the action is direct involvement.  They prayed and then they posted.

Earlier in Ezra there was a story of how on the trip back from Babylon to Jerusalem, they did not request that the Babylonians provide protection.  Why?  Because Ezra believed that the Babylonians would lose respect for his God if his God couldn’t take care of them.

In the Nehemiah story, the protection was put in place.  As it turned out, that “protection” was never called into play.  Maybe if the builders in Jerusalem had trusted God, they wouldn’t have had to worry so much about protecting themselves?  Were they trying to “help” God?  Maybe they were hedging their bet?

Maybe, in the Nehemiah story, God expected them to post guards.  And maybe God knew that if guards were posted the enemies wouldn’t bother them.  Therefore, He offered the Jews that solution.

The ultimate keys for me are that I must trust God and then do whatever He wants.  One size does not fit all when it comes to solutions.  I must be willing to do His bidding, not my own.

“Father, protect me from choosing my own ways.  Your Ways must be my ways.  Open my senses to catch what You want me doing.  Empower me to get those deeds done.  I love You, Lord.”

The closer I am to God the more likely I will know what He wants me to do.

 

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Carry out the obvious

“They all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and stir up trouble against it.  But we prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to meet this threat.”  Nehemiah 4:8-9.

Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading: Nehemiah 3-4, and Luke 22.

If a prophet of God had come to Nehemiah and told him that they didn’t need to guard against an invasion, then verse 9 would have been different.

How?  Guards would not have been posted because God was giving protection.

There is no prophet involved so after connecting with God the Jews carry out the obvious.

I have had that “carry out the obvious” theme running through my head for over a week.  Why?  Because I have a tendency to miss the obvious in my midst.  Instead of seeing that I can put away things in my office, I focus on something beyond the obvious.

I was just reading about Elisha and Naaman.  I love the servant in the story.  Naaman is offended that he’s told to dip in the dirty Jordan River to get rid of his leprosy.  Naaman wants to shun the obvious (dip in the Jordan) but the servant explains that the obvious is what is needed.

We ask God to bless us and then we wait idly for an answer, instead of carrying out the obvious while we wait.

Nehemiah connected with God and then went about the obvious; get guards in place.

“Lord, forgive me for missing the obvious.  What am I looking at!  I open every pore of my being to You.  Rid me of the sludge that blinds me to the obvious.  I love You, Father.”

Is there something obvious in your midst that you should be carrying out?

 

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Prayer and action

“They all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and stir up trouble against it. But we prayed to our God AND posted a guard day and night to meet this threat.” Nehemiah 4:8-9

(Verses chosen from today’s Bible reading – Nehemiah 3-4 & Luke 23)

The Lord is very patient with us.

In today’s chosen verses, the exiles pray and then take action.

How often do we pray and then expect God to do all the heavy lifting? I prayed, we think, and now everything will fall into place. Doesn’t usually work that way, does it?

After praying to God for protection, they decide to post a guard. God wanted them to be part of their own protection.

God is willing to direct my path. Am I tuned in to Him enough to get directions and then carry them out?

I ask for a new vehicle. Should I wait for Him to drop one into my driveway? Of course not!   Instead, I pray, “Lord, You see my need for another vehicle. Direct me into getting another one.” That still small voice (my conscious) then suggests that I do or not do something in order to make the purchase of another vehicle possible. Often times, action on my part is required. I just have to be alert to hearing what I should do and be willing to do it.

The exiles needed protection so that the rebuilding of Jerusalem’s walls could continue. They prayed and THEN set up guards to protect them round the clock.

“Lord, some of the things I need to do, or not do, are very obvious. Forgive me for not being tuned in enough to get Your frequent hints about what to do…..or not do. Praying is one thing but taking action after praying is crucial. Direct me, I beg. I am lost, or about to get lost, apart from You. I need You every second. I yield myself NOW to You. I love You, Father.”

Are you acceptable to God?

+18 – Too much body!

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