Day 11 – A Good Work

Nehemiah had a successful career as cupbearer to the king, yet deep within him he sensed the Lord’s calling toward something different. Something radical. Something only God could do.

The task seemed monumental…and impossible. The city walls of Jerusalem were broken down, leaving the people completely defenseless against attack. Nehemiah knew that God wanted him to leave the comfort of palace to life to lead the effort in rebuilding the walls.

Nehemiah responded in faith and obedience. He fasted and prayed (Nehemiah 1:4), he boldly requested permission from the king and for his help in getting supplies (2:4-9), he wisely examined the condition of the walls before beginning reconstruction (2:11-15), and he started the work.

From day one, Israel endured intense persecution. Their enemies ridiculed and mocked them, hoping that they would give up. However, Nehemiah and the people kept working day after day with all of their heart (4:6), believing that the Lord would give them success (2:20). As a result, the massive city walls of Jerusalem were completed in record time. When the surrounding nations heard that the walls were completed in 52 days, they “were afraid and lost their self-confidence, because they realized that this work had been done with the help of our God (6:15-16).

God has also called us to a great work. Like the Israelites, we will undoubtedly face fierce opposition. When the enemy hurls accusations our way and tries to defeat us, we must stand our ground on the truth of God’s Word. I love Nehemiah’s response to his enemies’ relentless attempts to distract him: “I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down.” (6:3) He refused to be shaken and remained focused on the Lord and His purposes. We must remember that just as God was faithful to finish rebuilding the city walls for the people of Israel, He will also complete the work He has begun in our lives as well.

“He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 1:6