When Nehemiah was cupbearer to the king, his heart was deeply stirred over the plight of the Israelites back home and the condition of their city. With the king’s permission, he set out to rebuild Jerusalem. He encountered numerous obstacles but refused to let them distract him from the task.
From his example, we learn the importance of:
Being in the center of God’s will. When Nehemiah cried out in prayer about his people and homeland (Neh. 1:4-11), the Lord showed him exactly what to do. Then God caused the king to be favorably disposed toward the request and to provide everything needed. Knowing we are right where God wants us will give us confidence to move through trials without being sidetracked.
Remembering what the goal is. Nehemiah knew that the Lord’s priority for him was to rebuild the city. God has also planned things for us to do, and His work is always of great value. We are not to underestimate our part, no matter how small it seems to us.
Accomplishing each task. Following every crisis, Nehemiah returned to the task at hand. By keeping the Lord’s goal in mind, we’ll be able to stay in our God-appointed place, carry out each step, and remain on course.
Accurately identifying our distractions. Those who seek to interrupt our work, divert our attention, or attack us personally are not from God. With the Father’s help, Nehemiah recognized whom to heed and whom to ignore.
Think about people and situations that are likely to distract you. Being aware of their potential to get you off track can help you stay focused.