The good hand of God is on each of us. He has wonderful plans for us. "For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them." Ephesians 2: 10 NASV
I pray that I, that each of us, would be so committed to His work that we would persevere under trial, buckle down when we're questioned and stay the course when attacked or discouraged.
May we be like Nehemiah. He was a Jew and a cup bearer to the King. Nehemiah wasn't born into greatness, yet he became great. Nehemiah didn't pray for God to remove his difficult circumstances. Instead, Nehemiah looked for opportunity within his circumstances. He was burdened for the things of God.
Nehemiah learned the wall of Jerusalem was broken down and its gates were burned with fire. He says, "Now it came about when I heard these words, I sat down and wept and mourned for days; and I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven." Nehemiah 1: 4 NASV
Nehemiah didn't stop there. He beseeched God. He interceded on behalf of the people. He prayed, "...we have sinned against Thee; I and my Father's house have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against Thee and have not kept the commandments, nor the statutes, nor the ordinances which Thou didst command Thy servant Moses." Nehemiah 1: 6-7 NASV
Nehemiah was courageous. He was committed to the work and the goal, in spite of trials and regardless of circumstance. While rebuilding the wall he and his men were mocked. Others were trying to wage war with them.
Nehemiah says, "Those who were rebuilding the wall and those who carried burdens took their load with one hand doing the work and the other holding a weapon...so we carried on the work with half of them holding spears from dawn until the stars appeared." Nehemiah 4: 17, 21 NASV
It's hard to carry on in the face of discouragement. It's hard to focus on the goal and what is truly important when urgent matters clamour for our attention. Momentary distractions perpetually exist. We often want gratification now rather than hold out for what God longs to give us. We need to press in and strive for the end goal.
Like Nehemiah, we need to be tenacious. He did not allow distractions of the moment to inhibit his goals. Certain persons wanted to meet with Nehemiah. They were trying to detain him and stop the work. Four times they sent messages to him desiring to meet with him. I stand in awe of his response. Nehemiah would not be detained.
He said, "I am doing a great work and I cannot come down." Nehemiah 6:3 NASV
Isn't that perfect? Nehemiah knew how important his work was. He had found favour with God. He knew he was doing the Father's work. He did not allow for persistent men to postpone his commission.
May we be committed, tenacious, and persevere, like Nehemiah. May we not get caught up in the minutia and neglect what is important. May we faithfully do what He has called us to. May we be courageous and wait on His strength to complete all He's called us to do.
"...let us lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us,..." Hebrews 12:1