Whether there are walls in your life that need to come down or there are walls that need to be rebuilt, we need the power and presence of God to supernaturally do what we cannot do on our own. Throughout this series, we will be walking through the practical logistics of fasting and how to apply this time-tested spiritual discipline to our lives to help make this the best year ever. In addition to our Sunday sermons which are available on our podcast, our pastoral team will be publishing a weekly devotional to help encourage and inspire faith throughout the beginning of this new year.
Nehemiah 1:3 (NIV)
“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.”
One of Blake’s and my favorite shows to watch together is TLC’s Fixer Upper, featuring our favorite reality TV couple—Chip and Joanna Gaines. We love “demo-day,” the excessive use of shiplap, and the open floor plan. But, I have to admit my favorite part of any house remodel show is at the end when you get to see the transformation. I love the way someone can take an old run down property and turn it into a dream home in just an hour! In an interview with the Gaines, they admitted that each renovation typically takes 2-3 months. With limited airtime, they can only show us about half an episode worth of construction when in reality rebuilding something stronger then it once was takes time.
Could you use a remodel?
When the Babylonian army sieged Jerusalem and destroyed the wall, the Israelites were forced into exile once again. Their homes were burned down and what was once a city dedicated to Yahweh now belonged to the enemy. This is the city that God established as His “holy hill.” This is the royal city—a place of refuge and promise and strength—and yet its walls were ruined. What was once holy and set apart was now a place of devastation. What was their place of hope was now in the enemy’s hands. How do you react when what you cherish is taken from you?
Nehemiah 1:4 (NIV)
“When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven.”
Nehemiah felt the weight of the ruins and his response was to cry out to the Lord for strength. With fasting and praying and confession, he knew the only thing he could do was place what was broken into the hands of the Creator. In those moments of desperate prayers, God began to unfold the plan on how to rebuild within this humble cupbearer. God restores, His promises are true, and He will never break His covenant with us. God used these people once again to rebuild Jerusalem for His glory. A commitment birthed out of a prayer and great faithfulness from God is what gave Nehemiah the courage to say I will arise and rebuild!
What the enemy has stolen from you and turned into rubble God will rebuild into a strong and mighty foundation.
What the enemy has stolen from you and turned into rubble God will rebuild into a strong and mighty foundation. Maybe there is a dream that you have been holding onto for 20 years and you’re finally ready to pursue it, maybe you want to see a family member return, or maybe your past is holding you back from the future you know God is calling you to! The Lord is ready and waiting for the next humble cupbearer to place what they have directly into His mighty hands. No matter how long it takes or what the process will look like He will never leave our side and is just waiting to reveal something even more beautiful than before to us through it.
- Can you identify something in your own life that desperately needs a remodel?
- Psalm 23:3 says that “He restores my soul.” We place our trust in the God of restoration, but what is one thing that is stopping you from placing the broken pieces of your wall into the hands of Christ?
- Fasting and praying was the dual combination that allowed Nehemiah to unlock God’s plans on how to rebuild the wall. What do you desire to see God rebuild for you?
This devotional was written by Pastor Emily for use during our Walls series. Be sure to check out the messages in this series by clicking here or subscribing to our podcast available in the iTunes Store. Emily Chamberlin is the youth pastor of New Life Assembly of God. Learn more about her by clicking on her picture.