Summary: How do you make sure that you are not getting ahead of God and the people you are called to lead?
Nehemiah was given the ok to leave Persia and to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. He was given letters of authority that he showed to the various rulers on his way to Jer. He was accompanied by armed soldiers and horsemen from Persia.
Nehemiah pulled into Jer. There was no fanfare. It was almost as though the people took very little notice of Nehemiah. Nehe did not seem to care. He was on a mission. He did not come to Jer. For recognition.
Nehe. Exercised patience.
He waited for three days before he investigated the ruins of the city. He probably used this time to pray, think, rest, strategize, and meet the people in Jer.
Nehe. exercised wisdom.
After three days, Nehe. Spent the late evening hours examining the ruins of the city. He circled the whole city with just a few other men. He wanted to see what needed to be done and how it was going to get done. He still had not uttered a word to anyone about his plans to rebuild the walls. He wanted to have a plan of attack before he shared his vision.
Soon after his night survey, Nehe gave expression to his vision. He identified with the people and their problem. He set before them a reasonable goal to rebuild the walls. He invited them in on the vision that God gave him. He also communicated to them the rewards of building. He told them that they would no longer be disgraced and that the God of Israel would get glory as His city was rebuilt.
We have a tendancy to take off trying to accomplish God’s vision for our lives on our own. Lone ranger mentality. We need to make sure God is with us.
Difficult task of leaders. God gives vision and we want to do it
It was 3-5 months before he could tell the King
It was a 4 month journey
He waited 3 days after arriving before he made a move
some of us would have already started the wall
rushing ahead of the people, dragging them along
people need to trust you, some are skeptical, takes time to win them over
people are drawn to patience, those leaders who don’t all the answers
Nehemiah was humble-didn’t expect a warm reception, didn’t seek recognition or special treatment
patience leads us to
Nehe. gathered as much information as he could before he forged his plan and shared it with the people
Humans dislike change. Use caution when changing things
Church in denial about why America is in the shape it is. Spiritual walls are down, and church denies its responsibility.
Most churches, people just don’t care
Exercising wisdom when change is called for
Wisdom comes from the father of lights
Nehe knew what needed to be done. Now he had to communicate that to the people
He identified with the people, showed them the need, invited them to see his solution, included them in the vision, set reasonable goals and explained what the rewards would be.
Do you identify with followers? The lost?
Let people see you struggle in your walk with Jesus
Focused on the need
Called them to a higher standard. Broken wall bothered Nehe
He asked them to see things as they were
“you see the trouble we are in. Jer. Lies in ruins and its gates are burned with fire.”
Status Quo being revealed-leaders challenge the status quo
Is God calling you to upset the status at work? In family? In this church? In your own life?
Church that upsets the status quo
Nehe showed the people a brighter future where they could worship God without fear of the enemy. A day when they would not be a disgrace. Leaders always articulate a vision so clearly that others can visualize it. People can feel it. People can touch it. People want it more than anything.
This is the job of a leader. When people sense that your vision is God’s vision they will give their lives for it.
Do you have God’s vision? Better make sure God wants the job done before you start. Except the Lord build you labor in vain.
People want to know how the vision is going to be accomplished. Do you have a strategy? Have you thought this thing through? This doesn’t mean you have all the answers. It just means that at least you know the right questions.
It means that you are so convinced this vision needs to become reality that you have done the research into what it is going to take to accomplish it.
I also told them of the gracious hand of my God upon me!
Part of being a leader is rehearsing the great works of God before the people you are called to lead.
Pastor Vinnie Cappetta, PhD
Crossroads Community Church