Summary: Staying the course…finishing well…in a word, persevering Is the revolution still on? in YOUR home—marriage/kids? At your workplace? Is integrity still worth defending? Is hope still worth holding onto?
Mission from God
might not be out there… might be right in front of you (parent blended family)
might not be BIG… out there…
Nehemiah has been our guide—and Favor With Kings our simple tool—to explore what I believe is true for all of us:
You have a mission from God that MOTIVATES you and MATTERS to someone else.
• Cultivate conviction
• Pray for favor
• Plan for opportunity
• Cast vision
• Keep people the priority
Today: Staying the course…finishing well…in a word, persevering
Is the revolution still on?
in YOUR home—marriage/kids? At your workplace? Is integrity still worth defending? Is hope still worth holding onto?
When word came to Sanballat, Tobiah, Geshem the Arab and the rest of our enemies that I had rebuilt the wall and not a gap was left in it—though up to that time I had not set the doors in the gates— 2 Sanballat and Geshem sent me this message: “Come, let us meet together in one of the villages on the plain of Ono.”
There always an Ono
Momentum… almost done… then
the plan doesn’t seem to working
someone else is in your way
the job gets complicated—isn’t what you thought
can’t shake the voices in your head
Sometimes you don’t know that you’re almost done…
the solution is just out of sight
the breakthrough is right round the bend
things are coming together, but then… ONO!
But they were scheming to harm me; 3 so I sent messengers to them with this reply: “I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down.
Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you?” 4 Four times they sent me the same message, and each time I gave them the same answer. Nehemiah 6:1-4
Can’t stop, won’t stop
“I’m not going down to your level”
there will always be someone pulling you down
there will always be voices inviting you to settle
Might have to resist the temptation 4 times
YOU SAY: “I’m carrying on a great project, I cannot go down”
“I’m serving people”
“There is a revolution at hand…this is my part in it…”
“I’m not done yet”
I’ve been inspired by bad news… I’ve cultivated conviction with lots of prayer and maybe even fasting… I’ve got my few that I do listen to…you’re NOT those people, you’re scheming to harm me… and I can’t afford to come down
“Cannot go DOWN"
Down to someone's level
Down to compromising the vision
Down to caring what people think
Down to settling for incomplete
Sometimes you should stop something. How do you know?
Run TO something
Not FROM something
sometimes the decision is made for you—God closes door, opens new one
some are serial project starters—but if God is in it…
Maybe you need a pause: rest… breathe… keep priorities straight
… remember that God’s love for you is not based on your performance
... but don't stop! You can’t stop!!
You’re on a mission from God that motivates you and matters to someone else
This is about the people… not you.
Doesn’t matter if they misunderstand you
Regardless if people try and manipulate you
You’re not backing down if they malign and slander you…
This worth it.
The people are worth it.
You’re doing something important—or you’re going to
This has to be worth it
This has to be fulfilling
If it’s just about you and your next car or house… or status or security… it won’t satisfy you.
We must do projects that matters…to people (other than us)
Another way of saying that:
Do work worth suffering for
Am I committed to the cause even if I get no credit?
heart-check: if someone else gets the credit how painful is that for you?
Does the job facilitate the dream?
your vision that breaks your heart may never pay your bills—that’s okay
mission and vocation might be different
but you still have to pay your bills
dream: family? job needs to facilitate that
Does my family believe in the vision or are they becoming resentful?
if you’re losing your family you’re missing the point
the project is always about the people—your family is part of that number
Will my pain lead to progress for others?
I can take the heat if it means healing for someone else
I can handle the criticism if it creates progress
“Special Needs”—Pushed wheelchairs—mocking—influenced athletes—befriended Adriana
Showed me a glimpse of God’s love for me
more than caring for the outsider
there’s brokenness in me
I can’t fix myself… that points to me needing God…
I still have a mission for you…we persevere together
Back to Nehemiah…
When Sanballat heard that we were rebuilding the wall, he became angry and was greatly incensed. He ridiculed the Jews, 2 and in the presence of his associates and the army of Samaria, he said, “What are those feeble Jews doing? Will they restore their wall? Will they offer sacrifices? Will they finish in a day? Can they bring the stones back to life from those heaps of rubble—burned as they are?” 3 Tobiah the Ammonite, who was at his side, said, “What they are building—even a fox climbing up on it would break down their wall of stones!” Nehemiah 4:1-3