I was recently reminded of this man in the Bible named Nehemiah. Nehemiah felt sorrow for his people and the city he had grown to love. Even though he didn't live in that city anymore God still used him.
Nehemiah loved God and he loved Jerusalem and his people. Even though the exile was over and the Israelite's were allowed to go home, he stayed in Persia. He was the kings cup bearer.
Nehemiah heard word about the state of Jerusalem and even though he was just a regular man, he
prayed. Have you ever felt like you were not good enough to pray, because you are not a preacher or teacher. As if they have a connection with God you don't have. Wrong!
Jesus is the connection that leads our prayers straight to the Almighty.
Well Nehemiah didn't doubt, he went straight to God in prayer. He asked for the kings favor.
10 “They are your servants and your people, whom you redeemed by your great strength and your mighty hand. 11 Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man.” I was cupbearer to the king. Nehemiah 1:10-11
I know there are times when I want God to grant me favor with others. It could be my somebody when I mess up, or it could be someone I am trying to reach for Him. I can use the same method of fasting and praying for that person, and asking God to give me favor in their presence.
That isn't the only prayer that Nehemiah said. This was just his opening prayer that set him on the path to where God wanted him. While Nehemiah was in the presence of the king, God granted him favor. He shot a quick prayer to heaven and then moved forward with his request.
4 The king said to me, “What is it you want?” Then I prayed to the God of heaven, 5 and 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 ancestors are buried so that I can rebuild it.” - Nehemiah 2:4-5
God answered Nehemiah's original prayer and so Nehemiah new what to do next. He in faith said a quick prayer and asked the king to go rebuild Jerusalem.
Nehemiah wasn't a prophet, he wasn't a teacher, or preacher. He was a layman, working in the kings palace. In someways he was working for the man, but God still used him. Are you working for the man, but hoping God will use you? Allow God to open your heart to feel the pain he has, and then give you favor to do something about it.
Don't let being plain keep you from the greatness God is offering you!
Nehemiah built the wall that secured Jerusalem. Just image if a layman could do that then what can God can do with you.
Has God put a yearning in your heart to do something? Have you spent time praying about it, and do you see God opening doors for you?
God has opened this door for me, or at least there are days the door feels open, and other days were the door feels closed. I think God opened the door, but after not doing anything about it. The door is starting to close.
I'm trying to trust God, but fear that I can't do this or that I will fail bother me. I know this sounds odd, but the fear of everything going good, but then being taken advantaged of is there also. In my head, I know God has this, but fear that this is more my doing and not his peaks in. Satan has just been sending lie after lie to me about this door.
This story reminds me that I need to fast and pray. Trusting that God will guide my path. Trusting that he will grant me favor if I am to move forward. And if not that he will close the door completely.
Have you prayed like Nehemiah? I would love to hear about God opening doors and granting favor on you.