I can recall the many times in my life when I’ve wanted to give in and give up. I remember a few years ago, I was burnt out on ministry. It was becoming a burden, not a joy. It had become overwhelmingly difficult for me to serve in ministry. I was allowing the enemy a strong hold on my heart and my mind. I was feeling defeated. I was ready to give up.
I had to start the process of rebuilding my relationship with God, so that my heart started believing truth over the lies that constantly kept trying to destroy me. Those lies nearly took over me. Thankfully, God humbled me and by His grace, He showed me that in His strength, all things are possible.
I imagine many of the Jews felt scared and defeated in Nehemiah 4:7-15. Yet, they had a leader who wouldn’t allow the threats of the enemy shut down the work of God. Although bad report after bad report kept coming in, Nehemiah did not falter. He believed in the strength and power of God to overcome that which seemed far too impossible to have victory over.
As the enemies gathered and plotted against the Jews, the Jews did not cower in fear, they, “prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to meet this threat.”(vs. 9) They also chose to “Remember the LORD, who is great and awesome.” (vs. 14) They weren’t going to allow some pithy little threat become something that would shut down the work of God. Although their threats would invoke fear in most, Nehemiah chose to battle this emery from a spiritual standpoint and in the end, he and the Jews had victory.
Nehemiah and the Jews practiced spiritual disciplines that we would be wise to apply to our lives today.
- They prayed
- They were on guard against the enemy, prepared and ready for any attack
- They remembered the LORD who is great and awesome.
- They fought TOGETHER and as family units
What in your life do you feel defeated over? As if it has victory over your life? You can’t seem to win over it and it constantly wants to drag you down into a pit of despair and discouragement? I would encourage you dear friend to pray, be on guard, remember the greatness of your God and invite others to fight spiritual battles with you. Do not give way to fear, or isolation. Surround yourself with people who will fight alongside of you and hide yourself in the shelter of God’s, believing it’s truth, allowing God to fight for you.
God, give us courage. We are afraid. We do not want to go out and fight against the enemy, we’d rather shrink back into places of despair and discouragement, but we know that in you, we have victory. We know that in you, we are more than conquerors, so give us courage, you are great and awesome, in Jesus name, amen.