Today we start in a portion of scripture taken from the book of Nehemiah. Nehemiah was leading a group of people in rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem… and they were facing severe opposition.
“Meanwhile, the people in Judah said, ‘The strength of the laborers is giving out, and there is so much rubble that we cannot rebuild the wall.’ Also our enemies said, ‘Before they know it or see us, we will be right there among them and will kill them and put an end to the work.’ Then the Jews who lived near them came and told us ten times over, ‘Wherever you turn, they will attack us.’” - Nehemiah 4:10-12 NIV84
Sometimes this is how life feels, right? We have no strength to continue, we’re tired all the time, and what we see around us is so overwhelming that we don’t feel like we can do anymore. If that’s not enough to bring doubt, fear, and discouragement, we also have the enemy determined to slip in unnoticed and speak lies in our ears. We feel attacked on all sides: emotionally, physically, mentally, and spiritually.
While the people working to rebuild the wall of Jerusalem were facing physical attacks, our attacks may come in a less obvious way… (“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against rulers, against the authorities, against powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” – Eph. 6:12) BUT they are no less real.
Nehemiah reminded the workers of something very important: “Don’t be afraid of them. Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your brothers, your sons, and your daughters, your wives and your homes.” - Nehemiah 4:14b
How do we do that?
Look at verse 16: “From that day on, half of my men did the work, while the other half were equipped with spears, shields, bows and armor.”
1.) Warriors! Who do we have positioned around us? And who are we positioned around? It’s so important for us to surround ourselves with warriors! We all need people willing to stand with us and pray over us. It’s equally important for us to be warriors for others. Who are we praying over? Who are we supporting?
Now look at verses 17-18: “Those who carried materials did their work with one hand and held a weapon in the other, and each of the builders wore his sword at his side as he worked.”
2.) Weapons! What weapons are we using? These men worked with one hand and held a weapon in the other. When they needed both hands, they made sure to have a weapon at their side. Our weapons are invaluable to us! Prayer and the Bible are the weapons God has given us.
We need to be ready, be alert, and stay armed!!!
When starting My Strength & My Song, one of our desires was to equip women with truth. Personally, we have both experienced fear, doubt, discouragement and the enemy’s deception—even recently! No one is immune to these things!
“Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.” Ephesians 6:13-18
God has laid it on our hearts to create tools that arm us for these battles. Sometimes we just need one statement of truth—solid truth that is backed in scripture-- to snap us out of deception.
“The Word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12
We are introducing something called “10 Second Truth”. This printable tool can go in our Bibles and combat lies that we come up against. As soon as you feel fear, doubt, or discouragment creeping in, grab your Bible and declare these truths! You will be amazed at the power in this declaration and the peace that will follow!
Nehemiah kept depending on the Lord… in verse 20 he declares: “Our God will fight for us!” -- Let us NEVER forget that!!