“The people you rescued by your great power and strong hand are your servants. O Lord, please hear my prayer! Listen to the prayers of those of us who delight in honoring you. Nehemiah 1:10-11a
Nehemiah was heartsick over what he heard about the condition of Jerusalem. He knew deep in his heart the restoration of his beloved city would take an act of God working on behalf and through His people. So from the depth of his grief, he cried out to his “great and awesome God Who keeps His covenant of unfailing love” 1:5.
Nehemiah knew because God loved His people and the city He created for them. It was also breaking God’s heart to see the city lying in ruins and for His people’s hearts to be far from Him. Humbly Nehemiah went before the Lord admitting their sin of not following God’s commands and decrees that was given to them.
He then reminded God of His promise to Moses, that even if they were to go into exile, if they would return to God and live by His commands, He would bring them back to the city He chose for His Name to be honored. 1:9. There is no greater way to get God’s attention than to remind Him of what He has said and promised. Knowing His Word that well that we can repeat it touches His heart and blesses Him in a way few other things do. Why? Because it means we’re honoring His Son, remember John 1 reminds us that the Word became flesh and lived among us. That Word was Jesus.
Today’s verses remind us that it is only through God’s great power and loving strong hand that we are rescued. That His ears are tuned and attentive to those who delight in honoring Him. It also goes on to tell us that with God’s favor working through us we will have success, even if we go before kings. Proverbs 21:1 reminds us that God can turn the kings heart any way He wishes. What a hope and peace to know God is greater than any earthly king or authority and that our prayers are effective even in what seems to be impossible situations.
Tomorrow we will see how Nehemiah not only went before God for answers to an impossible situation, but was then willing to walk out the answer.