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There is More than Defeat and Depression IN CHIRST For Christian Leaders

August 11, 2018

8/9-11/2018 

 

People that KNOW the LORD and the LORD knows them still struggle and often live in defeat. Many wonder if this is all there is and do not know how to gain victory yet have tried nearly everything. Why is life so hard and why are we so stuck in struggles, defeat, even depression? How do we start to admit that the Christian life does not seem victorious and that we are not the more than conquerors we are promised and want to be? What will really help us?

 

 

Isaiah 40:29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.

 

Psalm 119: 28 My soul is weary with sorrow; strengthen me according to your word.

 

Nehemiah 4:10 Meanwhile, the people in Judah said, "The strength of the laborers is giving out, and there is so much rubble that we cannot rebuild the wall."

 

Nehemiah 6:9 They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, "Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed." But I prayed, "Now strengthen my hands.”

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Edited quotes from link below:

“Nehemiah prayed four separate times that God would remember his work for the Lord in spite of the opposition and pressures he faced. 

 

Yet, as I skimmed through his account of directing a skeleton work force, standing up to those who didn’t want the Israelites back in Jerusalem in the first place, dealing with his own people’s sin including his right hand man, the high priest’s consorting with the enemy, my eyes stopped at one verse. At the height of the antagonism, when Sanballat tries to lure Nehemiah out to the plain in order to harm him, Nehemiah candidly notes their motivation: “They were all trying to frighten us, thinking, ‘Their hands will grow too weak for the work [of rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem] and it will not be completed.’”

How Nehemiah responded caught my eye. This time, he didn’t ask God to remember how hard he had been working. 

Instead Nehemiah prayed:

“Now strengthen my hands.” – Nehemiah 6:9.

 

I dropped my Bible and lifted my hands. Hands that had been sapped of strength while leading worship. Hands that _(fill in ways your hands minister to others for CHRIST________________…Hands that need to (DAILY ways you may use your hands, where you need strength)____________________

 

 “Strengthen my hands, O Lord!”

 

“I guess God thought I needed a review on that important lesson. The next morning, in the wee hours when I couldn’t sleep…, I checked the daily devotional from Our Daily Bread. The verse for the day?

 

“Now strengthen my hands.” 

 

Okay God, I guess this is a message You really want me to remember.

 

I love Nehemiah’s response to the troubles he faced. Instead of pulling a “Woe is me” on God, instead of complaining about how hard it was to be a leader, instead of caving to discouragement and threatening to quit, he turned to God and asked that God strengthen his hands.

Why? Because quitting was exactly what the enemy wanted. They didn’t want the work to be completed and they knew if they could knock out Nehemiah, the victory was theirs.

Nehemiah knew that he didn’t have it within himself to do the work or to lead the people. His help had to come from the Lord.

 

Look at your hands. What work does God have for your hands to do today? What opposition forces threaten to weaken your work for Jesus? What do other people or Satan himself wish you wouldn’t be able to complete?

You – and I – can’t do it alone. Like Nehemiah, our strength to do God’s work comes from Him. …If He could_(express your need)_________________, He can give me the grace to meet the needs of _______________to get off the couch and fix that meal, to put hands to ________________ write His message by my actions, teaching by examples, words, etc. 

 

His grace is waiting for you.”

“Not by might nor by power but by my Spirit.’ says the Lord Almighty.” – Zechariah 4:6

Pray with me: “Now strengthen my hands.”

 

{ https://karenwingate.com/nehemiah-prayer/#.W27dIy2ZNN0 }

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Nehemiah's pleas to OUR LORD:  SEVEN TIMES: 

 

1.} I beseech thee, remember the word that thou commandedst thy servant Moses, saying, Ye will transgress, and I will scatter you abroad among the people.–Nehemiah 1:8

 

2.} Nehemiah 13:14–Remember me, O my God, concerning this, and DO NOT WIPE OUT my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God, and for its services!

 

Asking God to remember is Nehemiah’s #1 prayer habit. Nehemiah asks God to be certain to remember 5 more times! 

 

1.} Nehemiah 5:19:(NASB)

Remember me, O my God, for good, according to all that I have done for this people.

 

2.} Nehemiah 6:14: Remember, O my God, Tobiah and Sanballat according to these works of theirs, and also Noadiah the prophetess and the rest of the prophets who were trying to frighten me.

 

3.} Nehemiah 13:22b: For this also remember me, O my God, and have compassion on me according to the greatness of Your lovingkindness

 

4.} Nehemiah 13:29: Remember them, O my God, because they have defiled the priesthood and the covenant of the priesthood and the Levites.

 

5.} Nehemiah 13:31: and I arranged for the supply of wood at appointed times and for the first fruits. Remember me, O my God, for good.

 

Altogether, that is 7 times that Nehemiah pleaded with God to remember and not forget.

 

There was great success and victories: Remember this:

 

Nehemiah 8:10  (NIV)

Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

 

Often opposition and almost being defeated is because we ARE BUILDING THE KINGDOM as THE LORD WILLS US TO DO. 

 

Ephesians 6:The Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.

 

Isaiah 40:31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

 

2 Corinthians 12:9-109 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

 

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

 

Psalm 22:19 But you, LORD, do not be far from me. You are my strength; come quickly to help me.

 

Psalm 28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him. 8 The LORD is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.

 

Psalm 118:14 The LORD is my strength and my defense ; he has become my salvation.

 

Isaiah 12:2 Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The LORD, the LORD himself, is my strength and my defense ; he has become my salvation.”

 

Isaiah 33:2 LORD, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress.

 

Hab 3:19 The Sovereign LORD is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights.

 

 

Eph 3:16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being,

 

Phillipians 4:13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

 

 

Be Thou My Vision

Song by Audrey Assad

Lyrics

Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart

Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art

Thou my best Thought, by day or by night

Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light

Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word

I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord

Thou my great Father, I Thy true son

Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one

Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise

Thou mine Inheritance, now and always

Thou and Thou only, first in my heart

High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art

High King of Heaven, my victory won

May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heav’n’s Sun

Heart of my own heart, whate’er befall

Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all

Songwriters: Ian Lynn / Traditional

 

2 Chronicles 16:9 “For the eyes of the LORD move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His.... 

 

Perhaps giving and living from a heart completely THE LORD’s is the key part of the foundation of strength and Vision for those needing strength and guidance IN CHRIST?  When our hearts are completely His, our heart IN HIM completely, He May strongly support us. His strength is our greatest power! His support, His vision = gifts to cherish and live for God’s Salvation and Glory to be known. 

 

Or we act foolishly as v 9 finishes in 2 Chronicles 16!?

 

Psalm 11:4

The LORD is in His holy temple; the LORD'S throne is in heaven; His eyes behold, His eyelids test the sons of men... 

 

I wonder if in the LORD’s seeing us and testing us is His way  of preparing us for our assignments/destiny and trains us for Revelation and Vision and we build spiritual muscles and are strengthened in the process? 

 

The LORD alone knows who He can trust. I want to be trustworthy n faithful and I give my heart completely to Jesus. Only He can accomplish “This Giving in me” to make me completely His and to keep me from falling! 

 

To BE COMPLETELY THE LORD's then we are more open to be given 

VISION AND STRENGTH From the LORD= Good Leadership Foundation

 

Mark 12: 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’

 

Jude 20-25  20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. 22 And have mercy on those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.

 

Doxology

24 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25 to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time[h] and now and forever. Amen.

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