“Survival” | Lessons from Nehemiah

We all need a higher call to manhood. Not just info for mind – we need inspiration for the heart  – something that will move us.    

Working together these will unleash the man inside God calls us to be. The response to a call always gets down to 2 things:

  1. convictions
  2. decisions

Strong convictions will lead to the right decisions.  

One of the biggest battles we face is temp to compromise. The temptation to compromise our morals, integrity, values, and our faith. We might know who we “should be” , who God created us to be…but then there is what the world is telling us to be and they don’t often line up! That’s the spiritual battle!                                                 

In a battle there is usually one survivor. Men are being taken out all around us.  The world is pounding! Don’t be one of the ones taken out, Be a survivor! More than that, be a “thriver!” Be a victor, to be the one who stays standing  strong & confident in the Lord. 

There is a difference between a male and a man. Male describes a certain gender, Man describes a certain character!

It’s possible to be fully male, yet totally miss the mark of what it means to be a man. Let’s look at Nehemiah and some of the ways he battled to not only survive, but to thrive!

Nehemiah 1: 1-3  

1 The words of Nehemiah son of Hakaliah:

In the month of Kislev in the twentieth year, while I was in the citadel of Susa, 2 Hanani, one of my brothers, came from Judah with some other men, and I questioned them about the Jewish remnant that had survived the exile, and also about Jerusalem.

3 They said to me, “Those who survived the exile and are back in the province are in great trouble and disgrace. The wall of Jerusalem is broken down, and its gates have been burned with fire.”

He gets word – things are not well in Jerusalem! Surviving not thriving!  Look at his reaction.

When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven (v4)

Nehemiah has deep personal conviction and he assumes deep personal responsibility.

I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father’s family, have committed against you. (v5b)

Nehemiah knew this problem was more than just . There was an issue bigger than just him. There was a nationwide problem here, but nobody else seemed too concerned about it. Nehemiah however was deeply moved!

Look at the state of manhood today. There has been a steady decline in the number of men who are really moved by where society is today, the state of their family, the state of their marriage, and their parenting. Men have fallen into an alarming state of “status quo” as though being disengaged from God, their family, and the Church is okay.

Nehemiah wanted nothing to do with that kind of “manhood” We should want nothing to do with it either!

Here’s what he does and what we should be doing:

Identify the problem area! 

For Nehemiah it was Jerusalem. It had become run down and in dire need of attention. What is it for you? HOW ARE YOU DOING IN REALITY?

  • Walk with God
  • How is your marriage?
  • Your family?
  • Relationships?
  • Righteousness
  • Purity
  • Integrity
  • Character
  • Discipleship
  • Responsibilities

An area many men don’t like to talk about is how our mental health is doing and how we are doing emotionally. How are you doing from a mental health standpoint? Is there any area where you need to talk and get some help?

How is your physical health? 

Ask your wife these questions, ask your kids, ask the people in your life – take an honest assessment.

Don’t be discouraged about what you see, be inspired by what you can be! 

Make a plan! 

After praying he made a plan and even though he was scared, he spoke to the king about his plan.

Nehemiah 2:2-4:

I was very much afraid, 3 but I said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should my face not look sad when the city where my ancestors are buried lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?”

4 The king said to me, “What is it you want?”

You may not know all the details right now. You may not know just how much work you have in front of you – but if you know there are certain things (big things) in your life that need attention – get some help and make a plan!  

  • Meet with someone you know and trust. Pray God to reveal and expose what’s really going on in your life. Get open and real. 
  • Identify the things that are most important to you. What condition are they in?
  • Talk to wife / kids / friends / brothers – ask them what they see.
  • Have someone help you prioritize your life. 

Make a plan for the big things first. (God, family, relationships ) the smaller things will usually fall in place

Work Your Plan 

Nehemiah 2:11-12, 18

11 I went to Jerusalem, and after staying there three days 12 I set out during the night with a few others. I had not told anyone what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem. 

“Let us start rebuilding.” So they began this good work. (v18)

A plan means nothing if we don’t work the plan. Most people can create a plan, what we have to be able to do is work the plan. Once you’ve identified the big areas – you need to start working on the plan. Pull people in and get some help and accountability.

Anytime we start working on a plan that aligns with God’s will, that is a “good work”!

 We looked at identifying your problem areas, coming up with a life plan and beginning to work that plan. When it comes to being that man God needs you to be, where do you see yourself right now? What area needs the most work?

This was a lesson by Jeff Schachinger during for our Men’s Month “Unleashed

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