Summary: Message on how God used Nehemiah and wants to use each of us to do extraordinary things for Him
Nehemiah – From Vision to Victory
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Recognize God for Who He is
Repent of your sins
Remember God’s Promises
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Don’t let your Position Hinder you
We are back this week into our series From Ordinary to Extraordinary.
Have you ever had a glimpse of what could be?
You have seen the way things are first hand and God has given you a vision for what could be, if only…
Perhaps you have seen kids in the foster care system and thought for some of them this could be so much better if only someone would step up and care for some of them
Perhaps you have seen a neighborhood in crisis due to poverty and lack of care of homes and thought this could be a nice neighborhood if only someone would come and begin to make efforts at change.
Perhaps you have seen people in your workplace suffering through life situations and thought if only they would be in church and start learning God’s principals of living, they would not have to experience the pain they are going through.
Perhaps you have seen these same things within the church and thought they could be so much better if the church were doing a better job of teaching them.
Perhaps you have seen kids just hanging out or watching TV through the summer and thought if only there were some organized activities at a safe place for them to keep them active and off the streets.
It is that “if only…” that is the stickler
If only someone would do something about this!
If only someone would see what I see.
If only someone could understand how much better things could be.
If only someone…
What if that “if only someone…” was you?
It can’t be me.
I don’t have the abilities.
I don’t have the time.
I don’t have the knowledge.
I don’t know what to do.
I can’t lead this.
Is it “I don’t…I can’t…or I won’t?
What if that vision that you see of what could be is actually God laying this on your heart and calling you to act?
But I don’t know what to do!
What do you do when you don’t know what to do?
Well, we are going to look at a person today whom God laid a vision upon his heart and we are going to look at what he did so we might learn and be able to take obedient steps of faith when the Lord lays something on our heart.
Today we are going to look at Nehemiah and the read about the better thing he saw and the actions he took in Nehemiah 1:1-11 (p. 342).
Neha who a?
He was a person from the Old Testament whom God used in an extraordinary way. He gave him a vision and helped bring it to victory.
I want to give you a quick background of Nehemiah so you can have the context of the situation.
Nearly 600 years before Christ, Jerusalem and the Temple had been destroyed by the Babylonians and many Isrealites were taken into captivity back to Babylon.
After nearly 50 years of exile some Jews returned and rebuilt the temple.
After another 70 years, a few more return to rebuild the city with Ezra.
After another 13 years, in 445 BC, is when the events we are about to read in Nehemiah take place.
Nehemiah 1:1-11 (p. 342)
1 The words of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah:
In the month of Kislev in the twentieth year, while I was in the citadel of Susa, 2 Hanani, one of my brothers, came from Judah with some other men, and I questioned them about the Jewish remnant that survived the exile, and also about Jerusalem.
3 They said to me, "Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire."
4 When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven. 5 Then I said:
"O LORD, God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and obey his commands, 6 let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer your servant is praying before you day and night for your servants, the people of Israel. I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father’s house, have committed against you. 7 We have acted very wickedly toward you. We have not obeyed the commands, decrees and laws you gave your servant Moses.
8 "Remember the instruction you gave your servant Moses, saying, ’If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations, 9 but if you return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.’