Nehemiah 13:14 Remember me for this, O my God, and do not blot out what I have so faithfully done for the house of my God and its servants.
How often have you thought to yourself or even prayed the above ask? So many times in my life, I am focused only on my shortcomings, sin, and shame that I do not even fathom asking God to remember my good deeds. In fact, I am deceived in believing that asking God to remember the good I have done is arrogant or prideful. Furthermore, as the Western Church moves more in the direction of grace, (there is nothing wrong with this movement by the way) I notice that when recognizing my good deeds I feel a since of guilt. This sense of guilt is rooted in a message that I am not to keep a checklist in order to gain favor with God.
I do not think that Nehemiah’s ask is from that vein. Nehemiah has been working hard to rebuild the walls around Jerusalem. Specifically in this context, he is in the middle of reforming the house of God. I imagine that Nehemiah, in the midst of this enormous task, felt the need to stop and ask God for favor in what he was doing. In fact, Nehemiah makes similar requests in other instances.
I find myself feeling the need to ask for an “Atta boy” from God every now and then. At times, when I am caught up in Kingdom work, I find myself looking at the weight of what I am doing. In those times, I need to stop and ask God’s favor. He doesn’t need reminding of what I have done. I don’t need to make sure my “good deeds” list is longer than my “shortcomings” list. I just want to ask that God remember what I have done for Him. And I know he does.
I’m sure there is something for God in asking for His favor. But, I tend to think asking for His favor really is more for me. Just knowing that I have an almighty figure in my life where I can go and ask God to remember what I have done reminds me that my work has purpose. This work is not limited to Kingdom specifics. I need to take the mentality that it all works for God’s Kingdom in some form or fashion. Either way, asking for God to remember what I have done is not a bad thing. He is willing to show favor upon me when I am working in His Kingdom. What an encouragement that is for me.
1. Explain a situation where you were working in God’s Kingdom and felt no one was appreciating what you were doing.
2. Did you believe in some way that God was not paying much attention? Explain.
3. What were your feelings toward God during that time? Be Honest.
4. Write out a request for God’s favor in something you have been doing. Look at Nehemiah’s example if you need it.
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