Sometimes the most difficult task is not getting started, but keeping going. One of the more arduous projects I have ever taken on was the finishing of the lower level in our home in South Dakota. I did some extensive tiling in the downstairs - about 600 square feet of flooring and a shower. Getting started wasn’t the hard part. I bought the supplies. I watched YouTube videos, and probably annoyed the flooring guy at Home Depot with all of my questions. But while getting started wasn’t that difficult, finishing it was. What I thought would take a few weeks turned out to be six months. I ran into all sorts of set backs I wasn’t expecting - uneven spots in the floor, warped tiles, tight corners, mortar drying too fast…let’s just say I was ready to quit more than once.
Of course, Christians face adverse situations that are far more serious than mixing mortar and laying tiles. If there is something you and I know, it’s this: adversity and setbacks are common to the Christian life. In fact, the book of Nehemiah along with other parts of the Bible remind us that every time we are living for the glory of God in all things, we will face adversity and persecution to one degree or another. As we mentioned last week, the Apostle Paul once told Timothy that all who desire to live a godly live in Christ will be persecuted. When an individual Christian, as well as the corporate church, move along the path of faithfulness - there will be opposition and adversity to be certain. The question is what are we going to do about it? Let’s turn to chapter 3 and chapter 4 of Nehemiah. I won’t read chapter 3 right now. We’ll refer to it as we move along.