Summary: Part three of a message based in Nehemiah on problem solving among God’s people.

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Introduction: Weather Balloons


Background: Not walls – spiritual condition, Recognizing (1), Reacting

Proposition Statement: In order to counteract a problem we must...

I. Be Prepared for service (vs. 11-3)

A. God is no respector of persons

1. He was a butler

2. He was the man of God’s choosing

B. Develop patience

1. Four months of seeking God’s face (Nisan)

2. There’s a time to act and a time to be still

a. Know how to determine the difference

b. He’d rather holler illustration

C. Face your fears

1. The moment of truth had arrived

2. Beware of imaging how it will play out

a. Lug Wrench Illustration

II. Be Connected (v. 4)

A. Why this day?

1. Most likely not a gloom and doomer

2. Sad cupbearer bad (v.1)

B. Make prayer a habit

1. Striking characteristic of Nehemiah was his prayer life

2. Beautiful illustration of praying without ceasing (1Thes5:17)

C. Being connected gives you the faith to push on

1. Fear prevention (LAPTOP Illustration)

2. This was a prayer for faith

III. Be Bold (v. 5-8)

A. If you’re on God’s side...

1. Look at just how bold Nehemiah’s request was

2. He KNEW God was for him

B. He knew he’d served Art well

1. He couldn’t have stood here with shabby character

a. Rats in the Cellar illustration

2. Art wouldn’t have honored his request save for God and Nehe character

C. He was prepared (v. 6)

1. Those months of planning paid off

a. Churchill Illustration

2. The King honored his plans

IV. Be Sure (v. 8)

A. Know that you are doing God’s will

1. Look for the Hand of God

B. God will bless you

1. God chooses to use us to achieve His purposes

2. He still moves stones

Conclusion: Thomas Edison illustration

Weather Balloons

Several years ago, I heard the story of Larry Walters, a 33-year-old man who decided he wanted to see his neighborhood from a new perspective. He went down to the local army surplus store one morning and bought forty-five used weather balloons. That afternoon he strapped himself into a lawn chair, to which several of his friends tied the now helium-filled balloons. He took along a six-pack of beer, a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich, and a BB gun, figuring he could shoot the balloons one at a time when he was ready to land.

Walters, who assumed the balloons would lift him about 100 feet in the air, was caught off guard when the chair soared more than 11,000 feet into the sky -- smack into the middle of the air traffic pattern at Los Angeles International Airport. Too frightened to shoot any of the balloons, he stayed airborne for more than two hours, forcing the airport to shut down its runways for much of the afternoon, causing long delays in flights from across the country.

Soon after he was safely grounded and cited by the police, reporters asked him three questions:

“Where you scared?”


“Would you do it again?”


“Why did you do it?”

“Because,” he said, “you can’t just sit there.”

(1) What’s the Problem

For more than 20 years Professor Edwin R. Keedy of the of Pennsylvania Law School used to start his first class by putting two figures on the blackboard 4 2.Then would ask, “What’s the solution?”

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