Looking at America today, I don’t know when we’ve ever been more divided. We’re divided along racial lines; we’re divided along political lines; we’re divided along ideological lines. Add to all these things a pandemic and national unrest, and it seems there’s no human solution in sight.
Maybe you’re facing an insurmountable problem in your own life as well, and it seems there’s no way out. In all of these cases, there’s a lot we can learn in Scripture from a man named Nehemiah and a prayer he prayed that impacted his nation.
Nehemiah was cupbearer to the king of Persia when he received news from his Jewish countrymen that the wall of Jerusalem and its gates were destroyed. After hearing this devastating report, Nehemiah wept (Neh.1:4).
Perhaps you can relate. Have you ever wept over the torn-down walls in your life? Have you ever wept over your own spiritual condition? Have you ever wept over the condition of our country?
Nehemiah was deeply moved for his people, and he wanted to do something about it.
But first he prayed. And God answered his prayer.
Sometimes when we look at our problems, we only want to have a spiritual solution (we pray, and we don’t do anything). Or we want to do something, but we don’t pray. But we must learn how the two go hand in hand.
So let’s look at some principles on praying from Nehemiah. If we want God to answer our prayers—if we want God to intervene in our lives and in our nation—let us pray for a personal revival.
- Nehemiah acknowledged the greatness of God. Nehemiah began his prayer with these words: “O Lord God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps his covenant of unfailing love with those who love him and obey his commands” (Neh. 1:5, NLT).
Before anything else, he acknowledged God’s greatness. Note that he calls God “awesome.”
The word “awesome” is still very popular, isn’t it? We say, “That was an awesome burger, wasn’t it?” Or, “That was an awesome movie.” We throw the word around a lot. But if you want to get really technical, only God is completely awesome.
What does “awesome” mean? It means awe-inspiring. Consider this: When you see God in His greatness, you will see your problems and their relative smallness. You may have a big problem. A big challenge. Something that’s kind of scary. But your God is bigger. Your God is way bigger than your problem. That’s something that you should always remind yourself of.
This way, you’re getting things into perspective before you even start.
Is this not what Jesus taught us in the Lord’s Prayer? The disciples came to Him, and they didn’t say, “Lord, teach us a killer prayer.”
They said, “Lord, teach us to pray.” And Jesus gave them this this template, or pattern, of prayer. “Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come; Your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven” (Matt. 6:9–10, MEV).
The prayer that Jesus taught us to pray, the model for all prayer, does not start with my needs. I don’t say, “Our Father who is in heaven, give me this day my daily bread.”
No. I should say, “Your kingdom come; Your will be done on earth, as it is in heaven.”
When we start there, we’re contemplating God in His greatness.
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SOURCE: Charisma News