Day 1

My Prayer to the God of Heaven

from the Nehemiah reading plan

Nehemiah 1:1-11, Deuteronomy 30:1-5, Deuteronomy 30:11-15, Hebrews 7:25

BY Amanda Bible Williams

Scripture Reading: Nehemiah 1:1-11, Deuteronomy 30:1-5, Deuteronomy 30:11-15, Hebrews 7:25

Back in 2014, when the She Reads Truth community was not quite two years old, Raechel and I felt called to something unexpected and, frankly, a little terrifying. Feeling a kinship to Nehemiah and his call to rebuild the walls of his city to establish a safe place for his people to gather and worship, we believed the Lord laid it on our hearts to build a Bible app with our Shes—a place for them read Truth together, every day. As that app was being built, the community read Nehemiah—some with the very first She Reads Truth study book in hand.

Today, four years later, we are reading Nehemiah together once again.

The Lord has done remarkable things in this community of Bible-readers in those four years. So many women have opened their Bibles for the first time—or for the first time in a long time—and have kept coming back, day after day. Together, we’ve approached God’s Word again and again as days and weeks have stretched into months and years. And together, we’ve marveled at what we’ve found: God is still faithful, and His Word is still true.

When Nehemiah heard that Jerusalem’s walls had been destroyed and her gates burned to the ground, he was devastated. As he wept for his home and his people, he did the one thing he knew to do: he sought the Lord. With prayer and fasting and confession, Nehemiah petitioned the Lord on behalf of Jerusalem. He declared God’s goodness and recalled God’s faithfulness. He spoke the Lord’s promises  back to Him, believing those promises to be true while also petitioning the Lord to act on them.

Nehemiah longed for his city to be restored, and we can guess from the gumption we’ll see from him in later chapters that he felt a fire inside to bring about that restoration with his own two hands. But before he put a hand to a hammer, he bowed his knees in prayer. In his humility we see a truth confirmed throughout Scripture: any sense of calling we have, even those directly related to our faith in Christ, rests on the strength, sovereignty, and grace found only in Him. Any good work is God’s work. He invites and equips us to participate in it, which we do by faith in Him, not in ourselves.

As we read this Old Testament narrative together over the next three weeks, we’ll see how God indeed called Nehemiah to lead the rebuilding of Jerusalem’s wall. But today, as we read this prayer from a broken man for his broken city, may we, too, begin with prayer and confession. Let’s declare God’s goodness and recall His faithfulness. Let’s speak His promises back to Him, knowing that He has both fulfilled them and is fulfilling them right where we are.

May the Holy Spirit teach us more about God the Father and Christ the Son as we read this book together. And may God give us strength and courage for whatever work He puts before us—both the grand endeavors and the single acts of faithfulness—to the honor and glory of His name.


Post Comments (218)

218 thoughts on "My Prayer to the God of Heaven"

  1. Karin Carlson says:

    Restoration-from a broken person to a broken city. Begin with God’s promises…on my knees before moving and doing

  2. Grace says:

    I was recently called to start a bible study at my school, and at the beginning of the school year I did just that. The only problem was I felt so unqualified, how could someone like me be enough to do something as important as spreading god’s word into my school. Through the past few months of my bible study the insecurities have built up. Every meeting feels unsuccessful to me and I’ve been in such a state of desperation. God’s really been trying to work in me the idea that it’s not through my works but his and just being more reliant on him. This passage aligns so much with the things I’ve been struggling with through out the start of my bible study. I’m new to she reads truth and haven’t done any of the plans, one of the leaders at my church just recently shared this with me. I’ve needed to read his word for the longest time, and especially with the struggles I’ve been going through, just doing what I usually do with god wasn’t working. As soon as I saw Nehemiah’s name I knew this was the one. It’s just so good how god always knows what you need, and leads you into that. I’ll be continuing to work through my insecurities and lean more on god.

  3. Ellie Black says:

    I know I need to read Nehemiah, I’m excited for what I’ll find! He knows who he is in Christ, he knows his purpose, and he does things afraid… all very relevant for me in this season :)

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