The story of Nehemiah and his concern for Jerusalem and the people of God is interesting and riveting. About 445 B.C. Nehemiah, an official in the Persian kingdom, enquired of the Jews; the people of God, affected by the Babylonian exile and about Jerusalem the city of God. The news broke his heart. He mourned and wept for days, fasted and prayed and could not be consoled. Such was the weight of the condition of the dwelling place of God.
Nehemiah could not rest, Gods Holy Hill, Zion was lying in waste and must be rebuilt at all cost. Nehemiah researched the needs of the project and prepared himself for the project before even knowing he would be allowed to be a part of the rebuilding. When the opportunity came, he could have stated how long a time was needed, materials needed and the critical path to be taken to the city.
Despite early opposition from the Samaritans, the Ammonites and the Arabs, He went to Jerusalem, surveyed the ruins and by night, shared the plans of restoration and motivated the people to rebuild. The process was difficult, the work was hard, the opposition moved from mere dislike to mocking, to attempted infiltration and sabotage even to open war, but still the teams worked. With weapons in one hand to defend themselves and work tools in the other to rebuild. They worked from morning till night, teams fought while teams worked, not going home, not changing clothes except for washing- they worked.
In 52 days, the wall was completed. A message of defeat was sent to the heathen and enemies that the work was wrought of our God. The people of God returned each to their place, the priesthood purged and worship was being restored, and God’s law was being read and taught.
This wonderful account of restoration must have some effect on us. Certainly, we realise that in many aspects much restoration is needed in our own lives, and in the lives of our brethren, especially those who have backslidden and certainly among all men and women, since we were created to serve God. A sense of deep concern and great desire to rebuild must be what occupies our minds and constantly pushes at us to leave our palaces, our comfort zones and travel the long and difficult distances to effect repairs.
God is waiting for us to see his purpose as worthy of our deep sorrow, great strategy, and highest priority. Our honest, respect and willingness to do what He says will cause Him to come to our aid. Despite what may seem a daunting task, fraught with much opposition and danger, with Him overseeing the process we are guaranteed success for ourselves and those around us.
Those around us are waiting for us to lead them in the rebuilding process. With God’s direction we will stave off opposition and through sacrifice, work with each other to the accomplishing of the task. We must not rest until we engage them and until the work is done.