Sometime when things are broken and in need of repair, we need people who have a higher expertise than we to fix the problems. Some leaky faucets and sinks can be repaired by the homeowner; but when the septic tank needs to be pumped, we have to hire a professional to do the job for us. We might be able to replace a light switch, or flip a breaker when the electricity goes off, but when it comes to wiring for a dryer or an oven, it is best to get a professional to do the job.
When it came to rebuilding the walls of the city of Jerusalem, there were different kinds of workers needed. Some workers had to remove the rubble, and I can, in a sense, see them with calloused hands working on removing the rubble where the wall fell down. I can see them removing debris with shovels. I can also see masons who knew how to build a straight wall, and piece in the stones that would be needed to build a strong wall. They would know how to reinforce the wall and make it strong against attack. They would have needed “engineers” who would know how to move massive stones, and set them in place. Truth is, everyone was needed with their set of skills and expertise to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.
As we think about these things, we see the lessons that we need to consider when it comes to rebuilding the broken families in our world today. Someone might need to show a married couple, (because they are an outside observer) what they are in need of to repair a broken wall. Paul emphasizes that husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the church; they are to love their wives as their own bodies; and they are to nourish and cherish their wives. Sometimes men do not know how to do this, because they might have come from a broken home and have not seen an example of how to treat their wives in a loving way (Ephesians 5:25-30). Some wives may balk at the idea of submission, because they are not sure that they can trust their husbands in certain matters. Also, some wives may be listening to the world that says all manner of submission is wrong. We know that forced submission is wrong, but choosing to submit is a quality that emphasizes that the wife loves her husband. Husbands should so live so that the wife can trust; wives give the gift of submission when they know they are loved.
Parents may not know how to rear their children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). Older generations can help their children to learn these things from their mistakes and what they know. Children need to be taught respect for authority, and that starts in the home. Children need to be taught, and shown, how to be good husbands and wives. What better place to get this advice that from God himself?
When it comes to the church, all hands are needed. Sometimes a lot of work is done by a few. Some work needs to be done by those trained to do it (replacing a light that needs to be replaced, rather than just a bulb). But there is work that all can and should be doing. I am grateful to be a part of a church where some of our ladies are visiting the shut-ins constantly, and bringing food to those who need it. I am grateful to those who do these things behind the scenes, and never get the “credit” or acclaim they deserve. I am grateful for those who pray; who are praying for the elders, deacons and preacher daily. I am grateful for those who try to look for others to teach the gospel to – for the men and ladies who work with the Bible correspondence courses to prisoners and their families; and to those who teach by example and by word their friends and loved ones. Everyone is needed. If we think that the only work being done is what is done on Sundays where we come together to worship, we are sadly mistaken. But all of us need to get involved. Some have volunteered, but have been ignored or forgotten. Such should not happen in the Lord’s church! We need everyone! And everyone should have a hand in rebuilding the church. God EXPECTS everyone to be involved. If you see a job that needs to be done, then do it. If you can’t do it, then point it out so someone who knows how to do it can get it done. Beloved, we all need to be involved in God’s great work. If you can make a phone call and encourage someone, do it. If you can write a card of encouragement – do it. KNOW that whatever you do for the Lord will not be forgotten, and know that you are engaged in the greatest work in the world – getting people ready for eternity!
Nehemiah was good at showing the need to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem, and getting everyone involved in some way or another. Sometimes elders and deacons try to do all the work themselves; this is a sad mistake. Please forgive us if we have done that – help us to be better by volunteering to do what you can do, and getting the job done.
You are needed; you are wanted – let’s get to work!