In Nehemiah we find the story of the rebuilding of Jerusalem. The people were “in great affliction and reproach.” (1:3) Without the walls and the temple rebuilt that lay in ruins, the remnants of Israel had no protection from the enemy, no division of themselves from the world around them, and could not reflect their identity as the nation of God that He called them to be.
You don’t have to look hard in your day to day life to see that in our great land, while circumstances are different, you could certainly say there is great affliction and reproach. It is up to us as the remnant believers to look at the world directly around us and begin to reestablish the walls.
In chapter 3 you find a great illustration of one of my favorite subjects of conversation, lifestyle evangelism. You see the walls were rebuilt by the nation, and they built where they were at, and what was already in front of them. The populace built in front of their homes. Certain sections built by business owners in areas they did business, etc. Where they were assigned, they built.
Today you will venture off into areas that you are assigned. You will do “what is in front of you” already. Whether that is pay bills, pick up dry cleaning, put in a day at the office or in the factory or warehouse, buy groceries, get gas, etc., you will do life today. And all around you will be opportunities to build the Kingdom of God.
I find three camps when it comes to evangelism. A large group that says, “I am not called to be an evangelist.” A smaller camp that says, “I’ll really do ministry when I earn some ministry spot” and will often tend to fill a role rather than BE ministry. And an even smaller group that says, “Here I am Lord, use me wherever and however.” My goal is to encourage you to become a part of that last group if you’re not already.
We are ALL called to do the work of an evangelist. Today as you go about your life, I encourage you, like the people that rebuilt the wall of Jerusalem, to look at what is in front of you and BE ministry.
Ask God for a word for the lady in line at the grocery store. Pay for someone’s food in the drive through. Pray for the man with a limp at the gas station. Speak prophetically over the man at the office going through a hard time. Take a lunch break with some homeless people and share food and your testimony of God’s provision and love. Stop on the street corner and shout, God loves you and wants to show you today, at the top of your lungs with no worry about how you’ll look doing it. It may start up a conversation with someone around you, or someone may have just needed to hear it.
When we make, or take, opportunities like this, we will be building the Kingdom of God. As we seek out, and then fulfill opportunities for those around us to experience the love of the Father, we will cause affliction and reproach flee their lives. When we take a moment to bring people around us into the family of God, we establish THEIR identity as children of God. You have been given the ministry of reconciliation. Ask God today how YOU can fulfill the role the HE has given you.
Posts like this are devo’s that I have written for our church home, Freedom Fellowship International, in Waxahachie, TX. Our devotionals are written weekly by leaders and lay people alike. Brothers and sisters in Christ just like you doing life together. For more you can visit FFI’s website at www.peopleatffi.com and click on the Prayer Focus Link. You can also listen to messages online and find out more about us. If you are in the area we’d love to have you visit.