In these verses we read of various people involved in repairing different sections of the wall. These people came from different parts of the land, with different backgrounds and skillsets, including priests (v1, 28), goldsmiths (v8), perfume-makers (v8), politicians (v12, 16, 17), Levites (v17, 18), temple servants (v26), and many others.
What can we learn from this?
1. It takes a team to achieve a dream. Nehemiah obviously could not rebuild the wall all by himself. He needed help, and lots of it. Likewise, when God places a dream in a leader’s heart, He will also provide a team to help make that dream into a reality – people with different backgrounds and skillsets, but with a common vision. At Thrive Church we believe the dream God has given us is to build a church of 10,000 AEIOU Leaders. It is a big dream that no one individual can accomplish alone. Praise God for how He has assembled and continues to bring together an ever growing team to achieve that dream. Whenever you pray for your church, serve with your talents, tithe faithfully, give generously, invite people to church, submit to your leaders, love and welcome those who are new, God uses you to build His church. Thank you for being part of our dream team of builders.
2. God remembers not just that you built, but how you built. While many people played a part in rebuilding the wall, notice that some people stuck out for how exceptionally they built, while some stuck out for how poorly they built. Among the excellent ones was Shallun, who repaired the fountain gate (v15) and seemed to go above and beyond in terms of what he did. On the other hand verse 5 describes how the nobles of Tekoa “would not put their shoulders to the work under their supervisors”. In other words, they did not submit to their leaders and thus became known as poor members of the team. You and I will be remembered for how we went about serving God and building His church – did we give our all? Were we good teammates? Did we submit to our leaders? Did we serve with humility, perseverance, and excellence? It reminds me of what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 3:10-15:
1 Corinthians 3:10-15 (NIV) 10 By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13 his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work. 14 If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. 15 If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.
Lord Jesus, You say that You will build Your church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it (Matthew 16:18). Thank You for choosing me to be part of Your church-building team. I pray that I would be an excellent, hard working, humble, persevering and united part of this team. I pray that I would please You by the way I use my time and talents to build Your church and the way I work with my brothers and sisters on this team. May You use us together to build a glorious church for You. In Jesus’ name, AMEN!