In Nehemiah 2, Nehemiah approaches King Artaxerxes of Persia to request permission to return to Jerusalem to rebuild the walls around the city. The King grants his request and even sends letters giving Nehemiah the authority to rebuild as well as providing the materials to rebuild the walls. Nehemiah surveys the damage and then shares his plan with the Jews living in Jerusalem. As they began the work, they received opposition. Nehemiah understood that the rebuilding of the wall would not happen, because he was a great leader or had a great plan – but instead it would happen because the LORD gave him favor. In verse 8 Nehemiah says, “And the king granted them to me because the good hand of my God was on me.” When Nehemiah shares his plan with the Jews in Jerusalem he says in verse 18, “I told them how the hand my God had been favorable to me…” And when there was opposition Nehemiah encouraged the people in verse 20 with, “The God of heaven will give us success.” If anything is to be accomplished for the glory of God, HE must be in it providing favor and the power to accomplish it. LORD, remind me that if I am to be used for Your glory, it will be because You have granted me the favor and power to accomplish the good work which You have prepared for me to walk in.
– Bryan McKenzie