Do you consider God’s will something that happens easily? Or maybe a better questions is this: do you begin to doubt that you are truly doing God’s will when things get tough? Is opposition, either by others or by circumstances, a cause of doubt for you, causing you to doubt whether you are following God correctly?
Nehemiah faced opposition throughout his entire ministry of rebuilding the wall around Jerusalem. The surrounding kingdoms attacked him in a number of different ways, all in an attempt to stop him from doing God’s will, from rebuilding the City of God.
First, they tried a legal attack, sending a letter to Nehemiah’s “boss” telling him that Nehemiah shouldn’t be allowed to do what he was doing. Nehemiah foiled this plan with facts, pointing out that he had permission from a previous king. Second, they tried an emotional attack, ridiculing the Jews, mocking them and discouraging them publicly. Nehemiah foiled this plan with prayer, asking God to take care of his enemies. Third, they tried a physical attack, making them stop by force. Nehemiah foiled this attack with military strategy, keeping a guard on duty day and night. Fourth, they tried a political attack, inviting him to the bargaining table in order to capture and kill him. This Nehemiah foiled with wisdom and political savvy. Fifth, they tried a religious attack, hiring a prophet to bring fake news to Nehemiah about an attempt on his life. But Nehemiah saw right through this one, too, and refused to hide away from attack and leave his people defenseless: he called doing so a sin. With all of their different attacks foiled, Nehemiah’s enemies finally lost hope and went home.
When you next face opposition to what you believe to be God’s plan for you, think of Nehemiah and be comforted. If you are truly in God’s will, you will face opposition, and with truth, hope, wisdom, and most of all prayer on your side, you can stand against anything. Lean on God, and He will hold you up.