Nehemiah 3:1-5:13, 6:1-7:3
Nehemiah 4:14-17, “Then as I looked over the situation, I called together the nobles and the rest of the people and said to them, ‘Don’t be afraid of the enemy! Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes!’ When our enemies heard that we knew of their plans and that God had frustrated them, we all returned to our work on the wall. But from then on, only half my men worked while the other half stood guard with spears, shields, bows, and coats of mail. The leaders stationed themselves behind the people of Judah who were building the wall. The laborers carried on their work with one hand supporting their load and one hand holding a weapon.’’’
It’s so exhilarating to know that we’re doing something with a bigger purpose than ourselves — especially when that purpose is a direct heart-prompt from God! However, when we’re sailing away to accomplish such a God-given mission, the enemy lurks nearby, scheming to thwart our best efforts. He is sly and cunning. He’ll stop at nothing to get us off-focus when we’re bent on being on-purpose for God!
Nehemiah was tasked by God to lead his fellow Jews in Jerusalem to rebuild the city wall. This was an enormous undertaking! The wall represented great political, social, and religious significance for the people of Judah. But to their neighbors, it meant trouble in the form of a power struggle with people they deemed unworthy. So, Nehemiah was walking around with a huge target on his back. And Satan was chomping at the bits to hit a bull’s eye by inflaming the tensions between God’s people and their newest adversaries.
Fortunately, Nehemiah was undeterred and wisely helped refocus his people on God to keep them on task. Through his keen leadership, they forged on, encouraged to know that God was their strength amid a continuous onslaught of naysayers seeking to stop them.
It’s far too easy to get distracted from a God-given purpose by negative people who might cause us to doubt our ability to accomplish the task. But Satan is just using them to throw us off course. So, when negative voices seem to drown out all else: “Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious….” Stay focused! You are part of something BIG — God’s Kingdom — and you are making a difference both here and in Heaven!
Heavenly Father, Thank you for the purpose you have put on my heart to further Your kingdom. Help me to ignore any negative attempts and distractions that threaten to get me off course. Keep me focused on the task at hand for Your glory. Amen.