What’s your problem?
We usually ask that question in a way that sounds sarcastic but it’s actually kind of important. Here’s why: Your life will be defined by your biggest problem. For instance, you can choose, if you want, to devote your life to a problem like, how can I become rich? Or, how can I be successful? Or, how can I be healthy and secure? Or, how can I avoid inconvenience and discomfort?
On the other hand, you can devote yourself to a grander, nobler problem. But in a way you will be defined by the problem you embrace, which leads to a bigger question: Do I have a problem worthy of my best energies, worthy of the life I spend on it?
This week, in Nehemiah 1:1-11, we meet a man with a problem. His name is Nehemiah. The problem that captured his heart was that the Holy City of Israel was in trouble. The walls were in ruins and the gates were gone. In the ancient world that meant no protection from enemies, no ability to control borders, no infrastructure — and therefore a cascade of detrimental social, economic and spiritual repercussions for God’s people.
This problem broke Nehemiah’s heart and how he tackles it is instructive for us – especially how he starts. See you on Sunday.