Monday, October 21, 2019

Kingdom Building. Five Lessons Learned From Nehemiah by Patty Nicholas

In my daily bible study, I have been going through the book of Nehemiah. Verse by verse I am amazed at God’s voice through this book, and I have only gotten through the first three chapters. Here are my top five lessons learned so far.

1. Allow myself to be broken by disturbing news. Nehemiah’s heart was broken when his friends told him about the state of Jerusalem and the walls surrounding the city. I am guilty of letting my busy life harden my heart to the awful events that happen every day. I know I am not alone with an exhausting schedule. I’m up early in the morning, write, pray and read, then it’s on to work. Many nights I have church activities or family matters that need my attention. When someone asks for prayer, or I hear of a tragedy, often I don’t stop long enough to listen well and let the news truly break my heart.

2. Know that God has strategically placed me for such a time as this. I know we’ve heard the same thing from the book of Esther, but If Nehemiah wasn’t cup bearer to the King, he never would have been in a place to ask and receive everything needed for safe passage and to rebuild the walls. There have been many times in my life that I wondered how God could ever use a tough situation or a mundane task, but He did. As a writer I especially identify with this one. I am currently working on a project that has taken me away from a novel I’ve been working on for a very long time. This new project will most likely bring little to no income, but I know God has given me this task to complete for such a time as this.
Know that God has strategically placed me for such a time as this. Click to tweet it!

3. Formulate a plan in secret, but don’t be afraid to share it when the time is right. Nehemiah rode around the city at night accompanied by a small team. He inspected the walls carefully and made a plan on how he would rebuild but he didn’t tell anyone until he was ready to share. We, as writers pull our inspiration from many places and often work on our projects in solitude, but there will be a time when we need to share our thoughts with others. Our words are meant to go forth. Like a candle, the light only shines when we set it on display.

4. Big projects may take a team working together to finish. Nehemiah chapter three is a listing of all of the people who built the wall and the specific section where they worked. Writing is often a solitary task, but when it comes to submitting our work for critique, or brainstorming a project, or editing a manuscript, a writer has to have help.

5. When we are working on something that we know is a task from the Lord, there will be spiritual warfare. Nehemiah encountered Samaritan men who were not happy that he was there to rebuild the walls. They enjoyed coming and going through Jerusalem without any opposition. The men working on the walls were told to build with one hand and hold a sword with the other hand. We as scribes, and messenger of God’s word are exactly the same. The enemy does not want to be hindered by the truth and encouraging words that we share with the world. We have to be just a diligent. We need to keep our sword of the spirit, which is the word of God close at hand as we work through the tasks we are given.

Multi award winning writer, Patty Nicholas lives in the mountains of North Carolina. She is a busy event planner for the Billy Graham Training Center at the Cove, and is a member of the Blue Ridge Writers Group. She is a mother of two grown daughters and grandmother of three. She writes Bible studies and devotionals as well as contemporary romance. Devotions are published in compilations by Lighthouse Bible Studies.