DAY 1: NEH.1:1-11
Nehemiah had a genuine concern for his fellow Jews back in Jerusalem, so much so that he, not only inquired about them (vs.2-3), but, was moved to tears and to petition God on their behalf (vs.4). He appealed to a covenantal God of love (vs.5) acknowledging his own sinfulness as well as theirs. He pleads on the basis of God’s Promise and Call (vs.8-11) to finish the work He had set out to do in establishing the nation of Israel.
Let us take time today, to reflect on the fact that we live in an area having the most number of churches per square mile in the world (Jamaica), but which has, comparatively, so little impact on society. Are we moved by the state many of the churches are in with so much wrong teaching and ignorance of the Word being promulgated by them? Do we cry out for the many being led astray not by the world but by preaching that does not interpret the Word correctly? As we seek God this morning let us take time to cry out to God for His churches. But let us start first with ourselves, confessing our own neglect of the Word and the effect that has had on our lives. May we be moved from heartfelt emotion to God ward petition.
DAY 2: NEH.2:1-8
Nehemiah in his concern for the state of his fellow Jews doesn’t just pray for them but decides to do something about it by approaching the king with a petition(1:11). By the providence of God that opportunity arises only some 4 months later (2:1-3). Nehemiah in trusting God to move the heart of the king literally puts his life on the line. For him, as a servant, to appear before a Persian king with downcast face could have been considered an act of treason! Crippling fear is a natural response in such circumstances. But Nehemiah in spite of that speaks out with courage born of a trust in and an intimate relationship with his God. Respectful yet tactful, he makes his request known to the king amid silent prayer (vs.4-8). Nehemiah meets success because as he says, ‘the gracious hand of my God was upon me’ (vs.8).
Today, let us face the challenges ahead with prayerful consideration knowing full well that we are His children and walk under the direction of His providence. Bear in mind that He who turned our hearts towards Him is the same One who moves the hearts of all men, high and low. May the gracious hand of our God be upon us.