1. Hello listening friends.
2. Welcome to this second broadcast from the series of messages from the life of Nehemiah.
3. We are calling this “From Rubble to Rejoicing”.
4. Nehemiah was a man of devotion to God and prayer.
5. Nehemiah knew that one plus prayer equals the mighty power of God.
6. let me remind you where we left Nehemiah in the last broadcast.
7. he had just discovered that the people left in Jerusalem were in trouble and filled with despair,
8. the city wall was in ruins,
9. the temple was partially destroyed,
10. the people of God needed someone of influence in the king’s court,
11. and Nehemiah was there by God’s divine appointment.
12. after Nehemiah heart the troubling news he wept and fasted.
13. he turned to God in prayer.
14. and today we’re going to look more closely at that prayer.
15. let’s hear the prayer again from Nehemiah chapter 1 beginning at verse 5.
16. Nehemiah was anguished that the name of God was ridiculed.
17. So he dropped to his knees and he prayed a three-fold prayer.
18. first he began with praise,
19. secondly he persisted in that prayer,
21. he was prepared in prayer to do whatever God asked him to do.
22. first let’s look at praise.
23. in verse 4 of chapter 1 he said,
24. Lord of heaven, oh, great and awesome God!
25. Nehemiah understood that he was standing before the majestic king of the universe.
26. Nehemiah understood that when we pray we are standing before an awesome God who is to be revered and respected.
27. some people have lost reverence for God.
28. because of Jesus we can now call him Abba.
29. because of Jesus we can come to him boldly.
30. because of Jesus we can come to him expectantly.
31. because only Jesus is the way to the father.
32. because of Jesus we have confidence that the father hears our prayer.
33. so Nehemiah begins in prayer with praising the majestic name of God.
34. when we step into the presence of God we must do it in humility and brokenness before him.
36. because God resists the proud,
37. but he gives grace to the humble.
38. pride is the very antithesis of what God desires.
39. pride is the mortal enemy of prayer.
40. pride is a hindrance to God’s blessings.
41. when you want to get the glory and the accolades and the praise.
42. when you don’t give all the glory and the praise to God.
43. God may let you receive the praise but he will cease to use you.
44. as Nehemiah gives praise to God.
45. he is broken before God and confesses his own sin.
47. because that’s what praise is supposed to be.
48. some people think that praise means music.
50. praise can be expressed in words or melodies.
51. but it is your heart that praises not just the words or the music.
52. it is your heart that needs to be like that of Nehemiah.
53. it is your heart that needs to pray and praise.
54. you need to say Lord, it is me.
55. Lord, I am the one, I need you.
56. Lord, I am the problem, I need your grace.
57. I heard this story some years ago.
58. about a little girl, disobeyed her parents.
59. so her mother sent her to her room to ponder her disobedience.
60. the tears did not last for very long.
61. within minutes her mother heard her to say.
62. you see God, what a lot of trouble you have gotten me in to.
63. when I went to bed last night, I said my prayers.
64. and I asked you to make me a good girl and you didn’t do it.
65. so it is all your fault and not mine at all.
66. and it is up to you to fix things with my mother.
67. my friend, listen very carefully.
68. until you stop blaming others for your troubles.
69. until you stop blaming God.
70. you have not learned what it is to humble yourself before God.
71. you must become a man or a woman who is absolutely and completely dependant upon the Lord God of heaven.
72. the God and father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
73. you must be dependent upon him emotionally.
74. you must be dependent upon him psychologically.
75. you must be dependent upon him physically.
76. you must be dependent upon him spiritually.
77. any way you look at it, you must be dependent completely on him.
78. when some people pray they say something like this.
79. Lord, you know that this is just the way I am.
80. Lord you know it was my home and the way I was brought up.
81. Lord, I do what I do because this is just the way you made me?
82. until you stop this kind of thinking.
83. you have not learned to praise God in prayer.
84. Nehemiah began his prayer with praise.
85. secondly, he persisted in prayer.
86. he fasted and prayed for a long time.
87. and he wept.
88. Nehemiah was a prayer warrior.
89. in I Thessalonians Paul tells us that we too must pray without ceasing.
90. how many times do we start praying about things or people and soon we forget.
91. but not Nehemiah.
92. he persisted in prayer.
93. are you persistent in the warfare of prayer?
94. the reason we must persist in warfare prayer?
95. is because there is no cease fire in the spiritual battle.
96. Nehemiah’s prayer began with praise.
97. but he also prayed persistently.
98. prayer puts us in a position of receiving what God wants us to have.
99. prayer is not overcoming God’s reluctance.
1. prayer is God’s chosen method to load us with his bounty.
2. Prayer is God’s way of performing miracles in us and through us.
3. But for God to do this we must be prepared to do what he wants and to do it the way he wants us to do it.
4. Paul tells us in Ephesians chapter 3 verse 20,
5. That God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all that we ask or think.
6. Do you know what that means?
7. That means that you cannot ask too much of God.
8. It means that you can’t imagine more than God can.
9. It means that there is nothing that we can ask God that he cannot do.
10. And that is why thirdly we find that Nehemiah’s prayer was a prepared prayer.
11. This does not mean that this prayer was prepared for him.
12. This does not mean that he prepared it the day before.
13. His prayer began with praise.
14. He was persistent with his prayer.
15. But it was also a prayer that was offered with a prepared heart.
16. Listen to what Nehemiah said.
17. Lord, I am your servant, do what you want with me.
18. My listening friends, please listen very carefully as we come to a conclusion here.
19. Don’t ever ask God for something without having your heart prepared to do something for God.
20. Prayer is not an excuse for doing nothing.
21. Nehemiah asked God for something.
22. But he was also prepared for surrender.
23. Nehemiah asked God for something.
24. But he was also prepared for sacrifice.
25. Nehemiah asked God for something.
26. But he was also prepared for servant hood.
27. In II Samuel 24:24 David said,
28. God forbid that I shall offer to the Lord that which costs me nothing.
29. My listening friend when you pray it means that you are reporting for duty and ready for service.
30. You and I are God’s means and God’s method to accomplish his will.
31. I prayer you must be prepared to do what you are asking God to do.
32. Nehemiah did not stay 1000 miles away and just prayed for them.
33. He didn’t just say, God bless those people with broken walls and broken hearts and broken lives.
35. Nehemiah said, send me Lord.
36. I am ready to leave the comfort of the palace.
37. I am ready to leave the safety of Babylon.
38. Is that the kind of prayer that you pray.
39. Do you just pray, God bless everyone everywhere.
40. That prayer is fine, but you cannot stop there.
41. What are you prepared to do?
42. Just like Isaiah prayed in Isaiah 6:8.
43. Nehemiah was saying here I am Lord, send me I am prepared.
44. Prayer makes it possible for us to obey and surrender.
45. And Nehemiah teaches us that it is not enough to pray for God to do something.
46. But we must be prepared to go out of our way for God to use us.
47. It is my prayer that you will be prepared in prayer.
48. Until next time, I wish you God’s richest blessings.