We Make Room

Which is easier?

A) Conceiving a child
B) Raising a child in a Christ-centered, loving home

A) Building a church facility
B) Leading a church to becoming a healthy expression of God's love in community

A) Repairing a broken down wall
B) Reviving the spirit of a broken down people

Nehemiah actually had two rebuilding projects.  And the latter would be the more difficult by a long shot.

In chapter 6, Nehemiah is even accused of manipulating the whole rebuilding project to his own ends, so he could become king!  Nehemiah responded, starting in verse 8: "'You're just making it up out of your head.'  They were all trying to frighten us thinking 'Their hands will get too weak for the work, and it will not be completed.'"

There's probably not a single person joining us in worship or reading this blog who could claim that the last seven months has not weakened our hand, i.e., our resolve.  But Nehemiah prayed:

"Now strengthen my hands."

When's the last time we asked God, "Please strengthen my hands."  To do the work God has for me, or you, despite the opposition that can seem to loom so large.  Notice, he doesn't ask for a stronger mind or heart.  There's work to do, and sometimes it just takes stronger "hands."  The resilience to persevere in the work God has given each of us.  

At UPPC, our identity is articulated by "Our Code."  It's not a to-do list.  It's a standard, or code of conduct.  Every family or organization has a code, by default or by design -- you choose.

The people of Jerusalem had a code, too.  But theirs was by default, to their circumstances.  Nehemiah and Ezra were tasked with bringing God's people back to the code which God designed.  And it's a conflict.  Nehemiah prayed for God to remember what his opponents were doing to intimidate him.  And the wall was completed...in 52 days.  52 days.  When Nehemiah's enemies heard this, they were afraid.  Why -- because of Nehemiah's building skills?  No.  It was because of God's undeniable presence and power through God's people.

Can you imagine all that God can do in and through you in the next 52 days?  In order to see God at work, we believe at UPPC that we must make room for God to work.  That's why the first part of Our Code is: "We Make Room."  

Here's the million dollar question:
How are you making room for the Spirit of God in your life right now?  Dare I say, is there a seat at the head of your table for Jesus?  Daily connection to the love of God and each other?  If you don't make room for God in your life first, one thing is sure: something besides God will come and take room in you.

Here are our guidelines for the week:
1) Put Christ first.  a) My relationship with Jesus is the MOST important thing in my life.  b) I can become consumed by his presence.  c) I worship him every day.

2) Pray purposefully.  a) What you pray for, you develop a heart for.  b) Pray for the people who are in your day, every day.  c) Pray whenever you can.  

3) Love others.  a) A person's greatest need is to be loved, valued, and appreciated.  b)  Loving others is ALL that really matters.  c) Communicate and show love.  

4) Hold a Nehemiah Vision.  a) God is able.  b) Dream God-dreams and believe that together can do great things.  c) Vision and dreams give people hope.  d) Believe for others and what they do not see for themselves.  

And all of this can happen only when WE MAKE ROOM.  

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