Rebuilding ( Part 4 )
[ Preached by Pastor Kenneth Chin at Acts Church Malaysia on 24 December 2017 ]
Acts Church 2018 Theme was centred on “Building and Rebuilding”.
In Rebuilding (Part 3), we learned to allow God to position us, to understand the process and to recognise every small progress in the rebuilding project.
In this final part of our study, we closed with a few more spiritual points.
Nehemiah 4: 8-9
“They all plotted together to come and fight against Jerusalem and stir up trouble against it. But we prayed to our God and posted a guard day and night to meet this threat. “
When Nehemiah heard about the state of Jerusalem, “So it was, when I heard these words, that I sat down and wept, and mourned for many days; I was fasting and praying before the God of heaven.” (Nehemiah 1:4)
Nehemiah started everything with prayer. Unfortunately, not all Christians start with prayer when a problem appears, what they will do first is to worry about the problem.
Christians can respond in many ways toward problems but the respond that counts the most is prayer.
Prayer must not be just a thought, it must be practiced and used.
When the next problem arrives, I encourage that we all take time out and pray about it first. Let’s make prayer our lifestyle.
2. The Watch
In Matthew 26: 36 – 41 (The Prayer in the Garden)
Jesus said in verse 38, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch with Me.”
In our prayers, keeping watch is also important.
When Jesus found his disciples sleeping, He said to Peter, “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Matthew 26: 41)
Prayer can be powerful when we keep watch with fasting, reading the word of God, declaring His promises and believing in His prophecy.
When we do not keep watch, our prayers can become powerless with doubts.
James 1: 6 – 8
“But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.”
Nehemiah made sure to watch when he prays, this is why he can get the victory.
“Nevertheless we made our prayer to our God, and because of them we set a watch against them day and night.”
People usually give up in the middle of something because the middle is when things are at its hardest.
Like how in a marathon, people don’t give up at the start or even at the end, they give up in the middle. The next time you reach the “middle”, you must have the perseverance to reach the end.
Meanwhile, the people in Judah said, “The strength of the labourers is giving out, and there is so much rubble that we cannot rebuild the wall.”
You will come to days when you will feel the people around you are less excited, and you can feel that their strength is failing.
It’s like how you can see people rushing for service, but after going to service over and over again, they are now dragging their feet instead of rushing.
The “rubble” could be discouragement, disappointment or even just bad habits. When you are in for a long time, “rubble” can build up. It’s like before you get married, everything was “never mind”. But now that you’re married for a while, you start having all these “rubbles”.
We must work to clean up these “rubbles”.
We have to clean up all the burdens, let go all of the bitterness and forgive all those who have done us wrong, only then you will be able to build perseverance.
If we pray, watch and persevere together, we will also get to the other side together.
What are “rubbles” in your life that you can take time out
to pray and watch?
How can you persevere instead of giving up today?
Written By: Jayden Thean
Edited By: Hailey Chung