After receiving the promise from God in our last reading, what was David’s response? Prayer. David was moved and spoke to God in this humble prayer of thanks.
David begins with such humility. “Who am I, O Lord God?” Have you ever felt that way? Perhaps God has revealed to you a plan for your life, and you don’t feel anywhere close to being worthy of such a mission. There is no greater honor, I can tell you, than to be used by God! But how often do we ever feel “ready?”
Continue reading “1 Chronicles 17:16-27 – David Responds in Prayer”
What a prayer! One of the elements we often forget in our prayer time is to give adoration to God. We do this when we tell him how great he is. The Levite leaders are showing us a fine example of this as their prayer begins! Brilliantly, they recount God’s hand at work in the lives of their ancestors.
At times, I felt like I was reading a sermon and not a prayer of confession. God knows history better than anyone, but it was a good reminder for the people to hear who were praying this prayer with the Levite leaders. They need to hear how their ancestors messed up, mistreated God, and how that all turned around. You never know who in the crowd may not have heard all of the stories passed down from generations or been exposed to God’s words before. We are wise when we can learn from the mistakes of others, namely our ancestors.
Continue reading “Nehemiah 9:4-37 – Prayer of Confession”
Have you ever confessed your sins out loud to another human? Our sins certainly become a lot more “real” when we do that. It’s also a great way to give away the power our sins have over us, simply by speaking them out loud. And we have an accountability partner to keep us from falling into that sin’s trap!
James 5:16 says, “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.” Nehemiah’s contemporaries are ready to make their confession public. I bet you haven’t ever sprinkled dust on your head or worn a burlap garment because of lament over your sin.
Continue reading “Nehemiah 9:1-3 – Confession”
What intimidates you? Maybe it’s speaking in front of groups, handling an overbearing boss, or volunteering to work with children at church. Those types of intimidation are more self-imposed by some fear or anxiety. Whereas Nehemiah is being intimidated by people who feel threatened by him and God’s people. As their governor, Nehemiah is a prime target to face all sorts of challenges.
We’ve seen how Nehemiah is a godly man devoted to God. He has listened to God’s call on his life, which includes his mission to rebuild the wall in Jerusalem. Nehemiah is also intent on leading God’s people to follow the laws of Moses.
Continue reading “Nehemiah 6:1-14 – Intimidation”
Welcome to the book of Nehemiah! In this book we meet another player in God’s rebuilding and restoration plan. Timelines and everything can get confusing, but the 20th year of King Artaxerxes’ reign is mentioned. That would historically place Nehemiah after Ezra.
God’ restoration plan will now focus on the enclosure to the great city of Jerusalem. Rebuilding the wall is the vision God will place on Nehemiah’s heart. Nehemiah is already overcome with emotion thinking that the home of his ancestors lies in ruin, the walls crumbled and unsuitable for protection.
Continue reading “Nehemiah 1:1-11 – Nehemiah’s Prayer”