Priorities. What sets them? What keeps us from keeping them? As someone who believes in God, I also believe that he has a purpose, or even purposes, for our lives. The number one thing that he has for us to do is love Him. After that comes other priorities like family, a career, friends, church, community involvement. If your anything like me though, you probably lose sight of the priorities that God has for your life almost every day.
A man named Nehemiah didn’t though. Read his story from the book of the Bible that is named after him. Here is a guy who felt that God had called him to do a huge task, to rebuild the walls of his home city of Jerusalem, which had been destroyed. It was no small task but it is one that he felt God has called him to…a priority that God had for his life.
As he was going about doing what God had called him to do, there were a group of people who were giving him a difficult time (as there always are whenever someone tries to do anything good.) These guys wanted Nehemiah to fail so badly that they were hatching plans left and right to try to get the worked stopped. Just as the walls of the city were finished, and the gates were about to be put back up they gave one last effort to get Nehemiah to stop the work and attempted to distract him by inviting him to a meeting. Nehemiah’s response was classic, he said, “I am doing a great work, and I can’t come down.”
Wow. Here is a guy that realized that God had called him to a very specific mission and he wasn’t going to let anything distract him from that mission. In Nehemiah’s case getting distracted would mean death, as that is what his enemies were trying to do lure him away from the saftey of his newly built city walls to kill him.
For us getting off mission, getting distracted, also means death, although probably not literally like in the case of Nehemiah. Getting distracted for us means our relationship with God dies, or our relationship with our family dies, or the dream that God has for our life dies. I think all of us would be well served to adapt the mindset of Nehemiah, and whenever we are tempted to come down off our wall and be distracted from the priorities that God set for our lives to say, “I am doing a great work and I cannot come down.”