Doing Right When Things Go Wrong
Updated: Aug 20, 2020
THE GREATEST THINGS that will ever happen to you in life will either be birthed in adversity or shaped in it—and for every step of faith, there will be opposition.
James Dyson, the inventor, made 5,127 prototypes to get his first cyclonic vacuum right.
Joseph's opposition came from his household—but he excelled in Egypt and became the second in command. (Genesis 37:12-36)
Meshach Shadrach and Abednego stood up for God, and they were thrown into the fiery furnace, but they came out unharmed. (Daniel 3:17-30)
NEHEMIAH was overwhelmed with grief and wept when he heard about Jerusalem's state—the walls were in ruins, and its gates burned with fire.
He sought the audience of the Lord waiting and fasting before Him.
Nehemiah confessed the sins of his fathers and the whole of Israel. He also acknowledged the sins of his household. (Nehemiah 1:10-11)
He asked God to grant him favour before the king, and when he appeared before Artaxerxes, the king granted him the request to go and rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
When he got to Jerusalem, Nehemiah did not tell anyone what God had put in his heart. He took a few men to inspect the walls at night, and no one knew where he went.
Then, he called the priests, the nobles, the officials and the people to do the work together and expressed his intentions—let us build the wall of Jerusalem and no longer suffer disgrace.
Returning to Jerusalem was the least of his problems—there was opposition simmering in the city.
When Sanballat, Tobias and Geshem heard their plans, they derided and despised them—they formed an opposition.
Opposition will come
SANBALLAT ridiculed them, calling them, feeble hands, and insulted them saying, "What are they building —if a fox goes up on it, he will break down their stone wall! (Nehemiah 4:1-3)
The opposition is not concerned about where you're coming from or how long it has taken you—all they want is to stop you—and kill your dream.
They make you question your God-given ability—and make you feel that you don't measure up—but that's a lie from the pit of hell.
Sanballat and Tobias sowed lies and doubts. Their attack was fierce, but they failed.
Are you faced with a dissenting voice? Is someone telling you to quit?
Weeping may endure for a night, but laughter comes in the morning. (Psalm 30:5)
Stay; do not quit.
You're either birthed in anxiety or shaped in it
How do you handle opposition?
NEHEMIAH prayed to God, and the people built the wall—for the people had the mind to work. (Nehemiah 4:6)
Your first point of call, when faced with a challenge, should be God. Then, you continue what you need to do.
Sanballat and his cohorts planned to come and fight and cause confusion, but Nehemiah prayed to God. He also set a guard over the wall day and night.
And from that day forward, while some laboured, half of them held their weapons to ward off any attack. (Nehemiah 4:1-20)
He was proactive.
How do you handle oppression?
AS TIME went on, some common men and their wives cried out against the Jews.
Some large families had no food—and some had pledged their homes and vineyards because of the famine.
They borrowed to pay King Artaxerxes.
The debtors and creditors were Jews— they had forgotten that God told them not to take advantage of their people—and collect interest on their loans. God also told them to support the poor among them. (Leviticus 25)
They became loan sharks and oppressed their countrymen—this angered Nehemiah.
Nehemiah loved the people. He had a thoughtful consideration.
He confronted the Jewish nobles, told them that they exploited the people—and their silence confirmed their guilt. (Nehemiah 5:6)
They all promised to give everything back and not take anything from their brethren in the future.
To follow through and prevent it from happening again, he made them take an oath before the priests.
Bringing it Together
NEHEMIAH loved the people. He led by example—and corrected them in love.
He knew that telling the truth without love is powerless. He did the right thing when things were wrong.
You are shaped less by the events of your life than how you view it.
And like Nehemiah, God wants you to stand in the gap and pray for your nation and the Body of Christ till you see His Will done on earth as it is done in heaven.