10/10/11 Nehemiah 3-4; Luke 23
S: Nehemiah 4:8-9,20 They all made plans to come and fight against Jerusalem and throw us into confusion. But we prayed to our God and guarded the city day and night to protect ourselves.
... When you hear the blast of the trumpet, rush to wherever it is sounding. Then our God will fight for us!”
O: Sometimes some Christians get so heavenly-minded, they're no earthly good. Some advocate that one must only pray for healing and not consult a physician. Some "trust God" to bring them a wife but do nothing to get to know good Christian women. Etc.
Nehemiah and his followers saw the threat from Sanballat and his people and so they prayed for God's protection, but they also took action for defence.
I attended the church service at the Logos Hope yesterday. The Logos Hope is the largest floating bookstore in the world and travels around the world and is currently at the Glen Cruise dock, Port Klang, Malaysia. The worship was wonderful and the sermon by OM Ships CEO Peter Nicoll was inspiring.
When Peter was younger, he made many telephone calls from payphones for free by using a trick coin. After he became a follower of Jesus, he sent a cheque for the estimate cost of the phone calls he had stolen, along with an explanatory letter, to the post office (which ran the telephone system in South Africa.) A lady from the post office wrote back saying that his letter and cheque caused quite a sensation and they didn't really know what to do with it, but that the lady was a believer as well and the cheque and letter gave her many opportunities to share her faith with her colleagues.
Many years later, Peter was tasked with setting up a new office for Youth for Christ, and was warned that it might take perhaps 6 months for the telephone to be installed, so he'd better get started on applying for it quickly. The ministry would be hampered without a telephone, but that was the way things worked those days in South Africa, so he did the necessary procedures. even as he and his team lifted the matter to the Lord in prayer.
Well, very soon after that, he was contacted by an official from the post office. The man asked if he was the Peter Nicoll who had sent that cheque so many years previously. When he found out that indeed, it was the same person, he told him that any ministry such a man was doing deserved all the support he could get, and the telephone was installed within a few days!
Peter Nicoll had to take the physical steps to apply for the phone, but God did a miracle as well by directing the letter to this man who remembered that incident from so many years before!
A: Let us both pray and do!
P: Father, we thank You that You do listen to our prayers, even as you also require us to use the minds and bodies you have given us to take the necessary logical and physical steps to accomplish things. In Jesus' name, amen.
Note: this is using the SOAP method. For more information, see this page (not written by me.)