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Nehemiah 1: The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. It came to pass in the month of Chislev, the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan that Hanani one of my brethren came with men from Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews who had escaped, who had survived the captivity, and concerning Jerusalem. And they said to me, “The survivors who are left from the captivity in the province there in great distress and reproach. The wall of Jerusalem also broken down, and its gates burned with fire.” So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.

So here’s Nehemiah. In Shushan. And he gets word that his beloved people are in great distress and that the walls of his beloved Jerusalem are broken down and the gates are burned with fire. his response was sorrow – he sat down and wept. My thought was this: why didn’t Nehemiah just go down to the local Christian bookstore there in Shashan and buy the latest book on practical how to’s of wall building? (i know, I know … it’s Shushan … no bookstores). I mean … that is what I would be tempted to do. It’s a practical activity – why not search for the professionals at least? This is truly a case of Biblical DIY SOS.

I’ll tell you why – he wanted to set his heart before the Lord and focus on the vertical rather than the horizontal. You know there are a lot of books on the practical how to’s these days – 100 years ago there weren’t any – they were all devotional commentaries. They were all about getting hearts in line with their Saviour’s heart. Study the great revivals of the past and they focus is on seeking God rather that serving men. There were not any workbooks for workers

When I think about apllication to my life: I just just want to do what the Lord wants me to do. I hope I am more concerned with seeking God than serving man. I hope I am more concerned with walking with God than I am waiting on man.

What a challenge!

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