Summary: Nehemiah gives us an example of what to do when we face disasters in this world and how at times God calls us to take a risk for the sake of others. We need to learn to call on God in crisis then go to work!
Series: BC Justice League
Opening thoughts to the series - “BC justice league” – God’s biblical super heroes before Christ.
Over the last few weeks we have been sharing the power of the story! We have been looking at how a person’s life can make a difference in the eternal realm of God.
http://www.whatsyourstoryonline.com/: Quote: Stories are powerful. Stories give meaning to who we are and how we became who we are. Stories help us understand how life happens, and they give value to our experiences.
Some of the most powerful testimonies to Christian faith come not from lists of accepted doctrinal beliefs (though they’re important) nor from recitations of biblical principles (also important), but from the enlivened re-telling of how God has acted, overtly or covertly, in each of our lives.
Sermon: Nehemiah’s Story pt 2
Thesis: Nehemiah gives us an example of what to do when we face disasters in this world and how at times God calls us to take a risk for the sake of others. We need to learn to call on God in crisis then go to work!
Summary of last week’s message:
What do you do when you are faced with a disaster that strikes home at your heart? Do you respond or do you try to blame others? Do you ignore it? Pretend it’s just a story? Nehemiah finds out how bad the city of Jerusalem is from a recent news report. It perplexes him and weighs on his heart. It was as if someone punched him in the stomach when he got the bad news about his beloved home town.
How do you feel when disaster hits close to home – how do you respond?
Do you run to God? Do you pray to Him and look to Him for support and encouragement? Do you praise Him and recall His promises in that moment or do you shut Him out and lock Him out of your heart?
Do you curse Him and blame God for the disaster?
Nehemiah did not instead he cried out to God and a divine burden was placed in his heart to go restore the city’s walls and gates.
I. Do you have a burden for others?
a. Do you pray to God about your burden? Nehemiah did? And it changed the course of history and made him a hero of the faith.
T.S. – His burden from God compelled him to take a risk to go make a difference in his hometown. Let’s read how Nehemiah took a risk for God:
Nehemiah 2:1-9: 1In the month of Nisan in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was brought for him, I took the wine and gave it to the king. I had not been sad in his presence before;
2so the king asked me, “Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart.” I was very much afraid,
3but I said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should my face not look sad when the city where my fathers are buried lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?”
4The king said to me, “What is it you want?” Then I prayed to the God of heaven,
5and I answered the king, “If it pleases the king and if your servant has found favor in his sight, let him send me to the city in Judah where my fathers are buried so that I can rebuild it.”
6Then the king, with the queen sitting beside him, asked me, “How long will your journey take, and when will you get back?” It pleased the king to send me; so I set a time.
7I also said to him, “If it pleases the king, may I have letters to the governors of Trans-Euphrates, so that they will provide me safe-conduct until I arrive in Judah?
8And may I have a letter to Asaph, keeper of the king’s forest, so he will give me timber to make beams for the gates of the citadel by the temple and for the city wall and for the residence I will occupy?” And because the gracious hand of my God was upon me, the king granted my requests.
9So I went to the governors of Trans-Euphrates and gave them the king’s letters. The king had also sent army officers and cavalry with me.
T.S. - Here is a modern day take on the story of Nehemiah today to help us apply the message of this life and story to our own lives today.
Video Illustration: The Life of Nehemiah – “Comfort Zone”
II. Are you willing to take a risk and leave your comfort zone?
a. Question: Are you willing to take a risk and help out someone in need?