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Summary: A sermon that shows three key points on fulfilling vision. Uses Nehemiah as a guide to help the individual fulfill god's vision for them

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Fulfilling vision

Nehemiah2:12b

“I had not told anyone what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem.”

Once upon a time…………………..There was a little red hen.

You may not know the story .It is originally thought to be a Russian folk story but the synopsis is The industrious little red hen is always on the move while the other farm animals just lay around and sleep. She finds a grain of wheat, plants it, harvests the wheat crop, prepares the wheat, grinds it, and then bakes a loaf of bread. When the time comes for the bread to be eaten, the farm animals want a share of it, but all they get from the little red hen is a lecture about when there is bread to be baked, don't loaf on the job.

All the animals have a vision of the cooked loaf but they are not interested in helping produce it.

The little red hen motivated by a vision of bread - the visionless observers!!

“There needs not a great soul to make a hero; there needs to be a god-centred soul which will be true to its vision.”

Christians are saved by grace and provided with a vision of heaven but Jesus in his teaching makes it clear that an adherence to the vision of the Kingdom is somehow implicitly connected to grace and destination. For example

.Matthew chapter 4 18As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the sea, for they were fishermen. 19“Come, follow Me, Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” 20And at once they left their nets and followed Him. ----------. They exchanged a vision of providing for their daily needs to a Kingdom vision.--That walk continued all of their lives

Nehemiah 2:1-20

Key Verse: 2:12b

“I had not told anyone what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem.”

We love to hear stories about ordinary people who overcame the odds of life and wind up doing something great. We have so many examples of people like this. In 1880, Helen Keller was born blind and deaf, but she overcame the odds and became a leader, inspirer, and the first deafblind person to graduate from college. During the Jewish Holocaust, Oskar Schindler, a German industrialist was able to save 1200 Jews by helping them to work for his company. There have been countless number of men and women who have done great things and have become great leaders and great examples for others. One such person was Nehemiah. Nehemiah was a plain and ordinary Jewish man who lived during the Babylonian exile. But he wound up doing something great and extraordinary for his people. Even though all of us here are ordinary 21st century people, we too can do something great for God and for others. But the question is, “How?”

Nehemiah had a vision and he held it as a core value in his heart:-

: 2:12b

“I had not told anyone what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem.”

The vision embedded in his heart propelled Nehemiah and he could not rest until it was fulfilled.

We see this same phenomenon expressed in Acts 26:20

but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.

I think that there is a deep connection between what we do and fulfilling vision – quite often what happens is we begin well but commitment and vision weaken. That weakening process is visible in the following process.

Leighton Farrell was the minister of Highland Park Church in Dallas for many years. He tells of a man in the church who once made a covenant with a former pastor to tithe ten percent of their income every year. They were both young and neither of them had much money. But things changed. The layman tithed one thousand dollars the year he earned ten thousand, ten thousand dollars the year he earned one-hundred thousand, and one- hundred thousand dollars the year he earned one million. But the year he earned six million dollars he just could not bring himself to write out that check for six-hundred thousand dollars to the Church.

He telephoned the minister, long since having moved to another church, and asked to see him. Walking into the pastor’s office the man begged to be let out of the covenant, saying, "This tithing business has to stop. It was fine when my tithe was one thousand dollars, but I just cannot afford six-hundred thousand dollars. You’ve got to do something, Reverend!" The pastor knelt on the floor and prayed silently for a long time. Eventually the man said, "What are you doing? Are you praying that God will let me out of the covenant to tithe?" "No," said the minister. "I am praying for God to reduce your income back to the level where one thousand dollars will be your tithe!”

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