This series, Progression of Prayer, has been inspired by the excellent bible study by Kristin Schmucker, "Arise, A study on the book of Nehemiah".
“Please remember the word that You commanded Your servant Mosheh, saying ‘If you trespass, I shall scatter you among the peoples, but if you shall turn back to Me, and guard My commands and do them, though you were cast out to the end of the heavens, I shall gather them from there, and bring them to the place which I have chosen, to make My Name dwell there.’ And they are Your servants and Your people, whom You have ransomed by Your great power, and by Your strong hand.” Nehemiah 1:8-10
In the last two posts we’ve considered the prayer of Nehemiah in Chapter 1:5-11. We looked at two of the keys that open our hearts to the Lord: adoration and declaration of His sovereignty; and our confessions of sin. Both turn in tandem to unlock our hearts, refocusing them on Him.
Now in verse 8, we see that it also makes way for us to bring our petitions before Him, offering a reminder to our promise-keeping God of the promises He made to His people. Reminding Him of who those people are. Not because He’s forgetful, but rather that they remember who they are.
But there’s something else in this scripture. You have to sort of look for it. Nehemiah reminds God of His word to His people, ‘if you trespass, I shall scatter you… but if you shall turn back to Me… though you were cast out… I shall gather them from there, and bring them to the place which I have chosen…’ Could this refer to us and our children? If we will return, will God also bring our children? It’s worth pondering!
Nehemiah offered one of the sweetest things I can think of when he spoke back to God His own words. He knew his God and knew His promises. It showed he was listening to what God said. And he remembered it.
For us, to apply it to ourselves is a reminder of who we are and to Whom we belong. It acknowledges to our Promise Keeping God that we realize how much patience, power and strength He has expended upon us, His people. He saves us ~ and our children ~ because of His Heart to do so.
God is faithful and will always do what He says He’ll do. So let’s also remember that He will. Let’s come when He calls. Let’s do what He asks. And let’s remember Who loves us and love Him back.
I pray you were blessed. Have a great week!
This series, Progression of Prayer, was inspired by the excellent bible study by Kristin Schmucker, "Arise, A study on the Book of Nehemiah".
“…please let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open, to hear the prayer of Your servant which I am praying before You now, day and night, for the children of Israel Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not guarded the commands, nor the laws, nor the right-rulings which You commanded Your servant Moses.” Nehemiah 1:6-7
In Part 2 of the Progression of Prayer, we read of Nehemiah’s request for the Lord to hear, see and be attentive to his prayers. Which is interesting, as if the Lord maybe wouldn’t have been.
So perhaps his request boosted his courage a bit. He’d already been diligent and thoughtful in his prayers up until now. I believe he knew His God, and knew Him to be merciful, but what was coming next was very important. He needed to submit to Him. Confess and acknowledge his imperfections, his sin. Not only his own, but also those of his family, and those of Israel, the nation in which he was rooted deeply.
It can be difficult to face up to our own sins against God, but to also carry the weight of them for our brothers and even our nation? That’s heavy, man.
So by asking God to hear, see and be attentive to my confession seems to me to clear my heart of presumption, acknowledging that I know that He knows that I know that I’m not perfect. That I also know that He has chosen me for a purpose. That I’m here on this earth by His design and intention. That I truly desire to follow Him and His instructions for carrying out my part of His plan. That I so much need His help with that.
It’s a heavy serious consideration how we approach our Father, Who is also Creator of all. I feel very daughterly toward Him. At the same time I feel humble before the One Who contains all the power possible and yet, having experienced it, know that His first choice is mercy mercy mercy.
This series, Progression of Prayer, was inspired by the excellent bible study by Kristin Schmucker, "Arise, A study on the book of Nehemiah".
And I said: “I pray, LORD God of heaven, O great and awesome God, You who keep Your covenant and mercy with those who love You and observe Your commandments…” Nehemiah 1:5
This verse, the first line of Nehemiah’s prayer to God for His people, struck me anew when I read it again recently. I’m learning that there’s a progression of prayer, a protocol for approaching the LORD God of Heaven and Earth. The One Who created all of it with not merely a word, but the word that contained the breath of the universe. It’s wise to be aware of The Whom one is approaching.
Before Nehemiah got into the heart of his request, he was careful to first declare to his God how incredibly faithful He is. Has been and always will be. That it’s God Himself Who is the covenant keeper with His people.
I would imagine that, Nehemiah himself, was reminded of the true character of His God. The God that owns the breath of all life. So that as he settled himself before this Mighty God to bring his request, he did so with humble confidence and faithful assurance that his God would hear and answer with generous mercy.
The attention of this amazing God of All Creation, the Heart of the Keeper of the Breath of Life, is captured by the humble approach of one who loves Him and is careful to guard His instructions.
This is just the beginning of the progression of prayer that I’ve been seeing. I want to share more in the next post.
Thank you for visiting today. I pray you have been blessed!