Learning From Nehemiah

Lately, I found myself in a weird rut. I did not pray often enough, and when I did, my words were uttered with no faith or power behind them. That just meant the source of those words (my heart) was not in the right place. Bleh.

And then I dove into the Word of God and felt like He was teaching me how and when to pray.

I was looking for a new daily Bible study/daily devotion/quiet time thing to do. After some searching, I came across one from InterVarsity and just went with it. Right now, they are in the middle of Nehemiah. I needed to get caught up in it (being that I have never read that book from beginning to end *GASP*).

I simply prayed, “God, please open my eyes to Your Words of truth. Let me see clearly the message you’ve been wanting to deliver to me.”

[BTW, Nehemiah starts off with the returned exiles living in Jerusalem with a broken wall, meaning they are vulnerable to attacks. Nehemiah learns about the wall that’s broken down and seeks permission from the Persian king to go and rebuild it]

After Nehemiah heard that the wall of Jerusalem was broken down and its gates burned with fire:

“…I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven. Then I said: ‘O LORD, God of heaven, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and obey his commands, let your ear be attentive and your eyes open to hear the prayer your servant is praying before you day and night for your servants, the people of Israel. I confess…

‘… O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the present of this man.’

I was cupbearer to the king.” Nehemiah 1: 4-11 (shortened-ish).

Okay. So what stood out to me at first was that in his prayer, he praised God, then confessed the sins of himself and his people, and then went on to the special request.

What blew my mind was that I looked over the short chapter again and saw that even before he came to this prayer, he was mourning, fasting, and praying for some days. I wonder what he was praying about before he prayed his special request @__@

Some more insight from this passage that God made clear to me… that God is the one who gives. Nehemiah prayed this hard, and the super special request was concerning asking the king for some time off to go and work on the wall of Jerusalem (which he asks the king in chapter 2). This prayer showed that Nehemiah believed it would be through God that he’d be able to go… not the king.

It is not the king who gives (or takes away), but God alone.

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So I’m all into jump roping these days. My school work has piled up pretty high, so I can’t exactly go on super duper long runs as much as I’d like to (nor can I blog every other day). Did at least 15 minutes per day of jumping rope. Did 30 minutes today (15 minutes, core work with stability ball, another 15 minutes). My calves are going to be freaking rock-solid. That’s considered sexy, right?

Also, I think I’m already transitioning into my winter workout (which will consist of a good amount of lifting and shorter interval runs). Whoops, I have two more marathons this year, plus a half marathon, so I should probably not get too comfortable yet.

Speaking of marathons, this Sunday’s marathon is not a race. I am pacing the FULL in the Morgan Hill Marathon!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

^The Running Addicts will be out there to pace this beautiful, gentle-rolling course. Or perhaps not that gentle… I can’t remember.

Then in November, I will run the Malibu Marathon (Veteran’s Day weekend!), followed by the Berkeley Half Marathon near the end of November.

Most likely, my last race of the year will be the Run Turkey Run 10K (on Thanksgiving morning, the one I did with Esther and some Running Addict friends):

run-turkey-run-025

[^Holy crap, I want to fix that random thing of hair across my forehead!!!]

Or a relay that takes place at Lake Merced (this one that I totally missed out on last year because I caught the stupid FLU).

We’ll see 😉

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Have  you read the Bible cover-to-cover? [No, not yet. I’m working on it… ever so slowly]

Have you read Nehemiah? Share your insights with us 😀 [I’m at chapter 4, and each chapter is pretty awesome so far :)]

What is going to be your last race of 2013?

One response to “Learning From Nehemiah

  1. Pingback: Guest Post: “Falling in Love” by Blessed with Thunder Thighs | Being Rebekah·

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