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You Can’t do it!

Last week we considered reasons one might say, “I can’t do this.” When you stop being your own enemy however, there are others eager to suggest (to you or to others about you) that you are unqualified or doing it wrong.

“Who made you ruler and judge over us?” (Exodus 2:14)

“Why did you come down here? (1 Samuel 17:28)

“You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a young man, and he has been a warrior from his youth.” (1 Samuel 17:33)

“My son Solomon is young and inexperienced, and the house to be built for the Lord should be …”. (1 Chronicles 22:5) NOTE: Criticism is tougher when from a parent; that didn’t stop Solomon.

… they mocked and ridiculed us. “What is this you are doing?” they asked. (Nehemiah 2:19)

…  “What are those feeble Jews doing? Will they restore their wall? (Nehemiah 4:2)

“What they are building—even a fox climbing up on it would break down their wall of stones!” (Nehemiah 4:3)

“He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself!” (Mark 15:31)

“Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? (Luke 5:21)


Think About it,

One of the first stories I recall hearing in school was of a man born dirt poor who eventually did well. A story that had inspired him was of the two frogs stuck in a well. Other frogs ringed the top of the well making fun of them. One frog heard it all and gave up trying to get out as there was just nothing to motivate him.

The other frog however was deaf. He thought the other frogs were cheering him on and he eventually made it out.

Negative comments to or about us aren’t fun. Shake them off and move on.

Nehemiah heard it a lot. The passages above are just a glimpse into the stiff opposition he faced.

Consider his response when his critics wanted him to come talk with them, …so I sent messengers to them with this reply: “I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and go down to you?” (Nehemiah 6:3).

In other words, “I’m busy. Pound sand.”

Nehemiah is the model of confidence after praying (as well as being armed and ready).

The wall went up. The exiles returned. Israel survived.

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