If you followed along in the last few posts, you are aware of the touching story I told about the rebuilding of my sister Beni’s foundational wall which had collapsed in her backyard. As I wrote those posts, my mind kept flashing back to one of my favorite Bible stories in which Nehemiah rebuilt the wall in Jerusalem. Although the rebuilding of the two walls is separated by thousands of years, some of the similarities between the two stories are quite remarkable.
To give you a quick recap about Nehemiah, around the year 425 B.C., the Israelites returned to Jerusalem after being exiled in Babylon for seventy five years. Upon their return, they saw that the protective wall surrounding Jerusalem was found to be in disrepair and the gates burned down, which left the city vulnerable to enemy attack. An appeal for help went from the Israelites to Nehemiah, who was closely associated with the king. Nehemiah believed he had an assignment from God to rebuild the wall.
Here’s where the similarities between the two stories begin. Both the Israelites and Beni were exposed to extreme danger without their foundational walls. The walls functioned as protective elements for each of them. Without their wall, the Israelites were clear prey for their enemies. In Beni’s case, her backyard and house were at risk for a cave-in with the wall gone. Both walls were extreme necessities.
Nehemiah and Beni both knew in their hearts they had to rebuild their respective walls, even though the projects seemed daunting. For each of them, the first step to accomplishing it all was to fast and pray. Reaching out to God for help right at the start was wise, for without God’s assistance, the tasks were nearly impossible. Deep in prayer, God was able to unfold to Nehemiah and to Beni His plans to help them.
And plans He had, indeed. For each project, God brought together all the necessary resources including the laborers, the building materials, and the funds needed to rebuild each wall. For Nehemiah, much of this was supplied by the king. For Beni, God brought it all together in quite unexpected ways, from a surprise gift of money from a church, to many kind volunteers who generously gave of their time in the building process. In both situations, all types of people participated in the rebuilding of the walls. And, God orchestrated it all!
We all know that every good story has conflict. These two tales were no exception. As soon as the building of the walls got under way, the enemies of God came out in full force to stop the process. Under no circumstances, did God’s enemies want to see Him have victory. Nehemiah was assailed over seven times through intimidation, conspiracy, mockery, slander, treachery, and outright attack. During Beni’s wall rebuild, she was beset in similar ways (especially by her homeowners association which created angst during the whole process). Throughout, both Nehemiah and Beni remained prayerful and faithful….and just kept rebuilding.
Regardless of any setbacks, both walls were completed by the hand of God (Nehemiah’s in record time of fifty two days). It is evident that God is able to defeat any enemy that rises against Him or His children. So, you see, no matter in what era you live, God is always the same…..loving, faithful, and ready to help in any catastrophe! You can always count on Him!
See you next time! Have a U Love week! Please join our U Love chain here!