Nehemiah completes the building of the wall and puts into place leaders that he feels are competent to carry on with the duties of caring for and maintaining the structure he has put in place. He returns to his post in serving the king of Babylon and later returns back to Jerusalem to check in with his leaders. Although I am sure the wall around the city was in good shape I don’t think Nehemiah felt the same way about what was happening inside the city, the appointed priest has setup shop a nice place for his buddy to stay in one of the storerooms. The Levites and the singers were left to their own resources and fled from the temple so they could survive. Last but not least they people had broken their promise to keep the Sabbath holy.
I put myself in Nehemiah’s place for a moment and felt like banging my head against the wall. All the time, effort and love Nehemiah poured out to rebuild the city and the people seemed to be slipping away again. I like what Nehemiah does next, he doesn’t just give his head a shake and walk away, he takes the “bull by the horns” and starts to clean house. He evicts the illegal tenant from the temple storehouse, he set straight the division of the tithes and offerings, pulls the Levites and the singers back to their rightful place and threatens the people with the “smack down” if they don’t return to observing and respecting the Sabbath.
Nehemiah took direct action in dealing with the problems; he put new leaders in place to help fix the situations. Nehemiah always surrounded himself with others when he needed something done; he built a team around him that allowed him to make the necessary changes. At the beginning of Nehemiah’s story we know that he spent much time in prayer asking for God’s direction and I have no doubt that he did them same at the end of the story. As I walk away from this story I am better equipped through Nehemiah’s actions as a leader to face the challenges ahead of me as I grow.