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Summary: A look at Nehemiah and how he saw his dream fulfilled

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IT WAS A CUSHY JOB. AND HE KNEW IT. IT WAS PROBABLY THE BEST JOB IN THE KINGDOM AND HE WAS WELL AWARE OF HOW LUCKY HE WAS TO HAVE IT. WORK WASN'T ALWAYS EASY TO FIND ESPECIALLY WHEN YOU WERE A FOREIGNER. MOST OF HIS FRIENDS WORKED AS LABOURERS, AND IN UNSKILLED POSITIONS. EVEN THOSE WHO HAD FOLLOWED A PROFESSIONAL PATHWAY FOUND A LOT OF DOORS CLOSED BECAUSE OF THEIR RACE OR RELIGION.

THERE HAD ALWAYS BEEN THOSE BARRIERS, AND STUMBLING BLOCKS BUT HE HAD RISEN ABOVE THEN. PULLED HIMSELF BY HIS OWN BOOT STRAPS SO TO SPEAK AND MADE GOOD. A REAL RAGS TO RICHES STORY. AND HE NEVER LET A DAY GO BY WITHOUT THANKING GOD FOR BEING WHERE HE WAS.

IT WAS A CUSHY JOB. AND HE KNEW IT. IT MEANT THAT HE DIDN'T HAVE TO WORK IN THE HOT SUN, THAT HE NEVER HAD TO WORRY ABOUT GOING HUNGRY OR HAVING NO PLACE TO SLEEP AT NIGHT. IT MEANT SECURITY FOR HIS FAMILY, IT MEANT HAVING A COMFORTABLE PLACE TO LIVE, AND PLENTY TO EAT. AND HE REALLY DIDN'T RELISH THE THOUGHTS OF DISRUPTING HIS LIFE AT ALL. IT WAS A CUSHY JOB. AND HE KNEW IT AND HE WASN'T GOING TO LET ANYTHING RUIN THE GOOD THING HE HAD GOING.

HIS NAME WAS NEHEMIAH, AND THE BIBLE TELLS US IN NEHEMIAH 1:11 THAT HE WAS CUPBEARER TO THE KING. AND WELL THAT MIGHT NOT MEAN MUCH TO US, IT MEANT A LOT TO NEHEMIAH. YOU SEE IT REALLY WAS A CUSHY JOB, HE DID EXACTLY WHAT HIS TITLE IMPLIED HE DID, HE CARRIED THE KINGS CUP. IN A TIME WHEN KINGS WERE DEPOSED IN A MUCH MORE PERMANENT WAY, THEN WHAT OUR PRESENT PRIME MINISTER DID TO OUR FORMER PRIME MINISTER THERE WAS ALWAYS A FEAR THAT ONE MIGHT FIND ONESELF DRINKING STRYCHNINE WINE. THUS YOU HAD A CUPBEARER WHOSE JOB IT WAS TO ENSURE THAT YOUR CUP WAS NOT HAZARDOUS TO YOUR HEALTH. HE CARRIED THAT CUP WITH HIM EVERY WHERE HE WENT, IT NEVER LEFT HIS SIGHT. AND HE COULD ALWAYS REASSURE THE KING THAT WHEN HIS DRINKS WERE POURED THAT THERE WOULD BE NOTHING WRONG WITH THE CUP.

NOW THE ONLY DRAWBACK WITH THE JOB WAS THAT NEHEMIAH ALWAYS GOT TO HAVE THE FIRST DRINK OUT OF THE CUP, JUST IN CASE. BUT BEING AN OPTIMIST NEHEMIAH'S OUTLOOK WAS "SO FAR, SO GOOD." NEHEMIAH HAD IT MADE, AND HE KNEW IT.

IT'S VERY EASY TO GET COMFORTABLE IN THIS LIFE, AND VERY EASY TO GET COMFORTABLE AS A CHURCH. YOU'VE SEEN THOSE CHURCHES THAT GET SETTLED INTO THEIR LITTLE NICHE, THE OFFERINGS ARE HOLDING STEADY, THE PREACHERS DOING ALRIGHT, THE BUILDING IS ALMOST PAID OFF, WHY ROCK THE BOAT. THEY'VE GOTTEN INTO A RUT, AND YOU KNOW AS WELL AS I DO WHAT A RUT IS, IT'S JUST A GRAVE WITH BOTH ENDS KICKED OUT. THEY ARE COMFORTABLE BUT THEY REALLY AREN'T DOING ANYTHING FOR THE KINGDOM, ALL THEY ARE DOING IS PUTTING IN TIME.

WHEN APPLE COMPUTER'S CO-FOUNDER STEVE JOBS APPROACHED JOHN SCULLEY VICE PRESIDENT OF PEPSI ABOUT COMING ON BOARD WITH APPLE AS CHAIRMAN OF THE COMPANY HE ASKED HIM THE QUESTION "ARE YOU CONTENT TO SPEND YOUR LIFE SELLING FIZZY WATER OR DO YOU WANT TO CHANGE THE WORLD?"

AND SO WE HAVE TO ASK OURSELVES DO WE WANT TO SPEND OUR LIFE PLAYING CHURCH OR DO WE WANT TO CHANGE THE WORLD. DO WE WANT TO STAY COMFORTABLE. RIGHT NOW WE ARE IN THE COMFORT ZONE. WE HAVE A DECENT BUILDING THAT IS AIR CONDITIONED AND ONLY COST 35 BUCKS A WEEK, WE HAVE A DECENT PASTORAL STAFF, OUR MUSIC IS GETTING REALLY GOOD, WE HAVE ONE OF THE TOP YOUTH AND YOUNG ADULT GROUPS AROUND WE HAVE ENTERED THE COMFORT ZONE.


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