Restoration, Stability, and Strength

The work of the Holy Spirit is to take the treasures of His wealth and bring them to the surface in our lives. From the moment of the new birth, God is
working within us to restore the areas of our lives that have suffered from the impact of sin.

There is a beautiful illustration of the work of the Spirit in the Book of Nehemiah. This man, Nehemiah, was a vessel used of God to bring forth an important
strength in God’s people. His experience also gives us an example of what must take place in a person who is seeking restoration, stability, and spiritual
strength. The Apostle Paul called these Old Testament experiences examples for us (see 1 Corinthians 10:6).

In the opening lines of the Book of Nehemiah, the stage is set for a powerful revelation.

“The words of Nehemiah the son of Hachaliah. And it came to pass in the month Chisleu, in the twentieth year, as I was in Shushan the palace, That Hanani,
one of my brethren, came, he and certain men of Judah; and I asked them concerning the Jews that had escaped, which were left of the captivity, and
concerning Jerusalem. And they said unto me, The remnant that are left of the captivity there in the province are in great affliction and reproach:
the wall of Jerusalem also is broken down, and the gates thereof are burned with fire” (Nehemiah 1:1-3 KJV).

The city of Jerusalem was at a crucial time in its history. The temple had been rebuilt and worship had been restored, yet the walls of the city still
lay in ruin.

In those days the walls of a city served several purposes. By surrounding the city, they helped to protect it from invasion. The high towers built upon
these walls provided a place for watchmen to view the countryside. This vantage point gave them time to prepare the city for battle as an enemy was
still approaching. Therefore, they could not be surprised.

The report came to Nehemiah many miles away in the palace of the Persian king that the people of Jerusalem were greatly afflicted and reproached because
there were no walls around their city. The report that came to Nehemiah described a city that was vulnerable to its enemies and embarrassed by its
weak position.

Nehemiah’s heart sank as he heard the grim words of his kinsman. He wept and mourned for days. God’s city was in desperate need, and Nehemiah was moved
by God into action. He prayed that God would use him to change the condition of Jerusalem. Something had to be done. The ruined walls would have to
be cleared away and new walls built. Jerusalem must again be a city that glorified Jehovah God!

The condition of Jerusalem in Nehemiah’s day seems to reflect the conditions of countless Christians today. If we find it difficult to deal with the challenges
that rise up against us, we must strengthen ourselves by calling on the Holy Spirit for help. As the walls of our souls are strengthened, we will be
less and less vulnerable to the attacks of our enemy.

Life Enrichment with Dennis and Vikki Burke

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