Looking back, looking ahead

We have acted very wickedly toward you. We have not obeyed the commands, decrees and laws you gave your servant Moses … Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of this your servant and to the prayer of your servants who delight in revering your name. Give your servant success today by granting him favor in the presence of this man.

- Nehemiah 1:7, 11

In today’s passage we see a snippet of this beautiful prayer from Nehemiah. He looked back over the previous months and years and acknowledged where he and his people stumbled and failed. And he looked forward to the tasks ahead of him and asked God for assistance and guidance.

A lot of our work in 2015 will involve undoing damage from 2014. This is almost always the way it is. Healing and restoration are always part of good work: healing in our own lives and restoration in our community.

Looking back on 2014, what are areas that need healing and restoration?

As you launch into 2015, maybe you have a growing concern or a nagging sense that something needs to be done. This is what happened to Nehemiah. He heard about the state of his ancestral city and it bothered him and bothered him. Eventually, he decided to do something about it.

Looking ahead to 2015, what do you need to take time to engage?

If something comes to mind, don’t put it off any longer. At the very least, pray for it head on. Who knows what doors God will open?

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