In his book He Walks Among Us, Rich Stearns, president of World Vision, mentions the daunting task tackled by Nehemiah and those who returned to Jerusalem after exile in Babylon. The walls of the city had been destroyed many years before, but Nehemiah set out to make sure they were rebuilt. How in the world would they accomplish such a enormous task? Stearns writes
Nehemiah understood that great walls are repaired just one stone at a time, so he organized the people to each do their part: “Above the Horse Gate, the priests made repairs, each in front of his own house” (Nehemiah 3:28). The impossible task of rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem was completed in fifty- two days because each person tackled the section of the wall that lay right in front of them (p. 40).
When there are billions of people living in poverty all over the world and thousands of children dying each day, what difference can any of us really make? Talk about a daunting task! Where would we even start?
Well, rather than feeling guilty or inadequate, we might want to ask the question, “What’s my part of the wall?” What opportunity has God placed before you to make a difference in what looks insignificant but is in reality a very important job? Who did you see with a need today? Whether in a far away place or across the street, that’s your part of the wall.
Stearns also quotes Oswald Chambers:
The great hindrance in spiritual life is that we will look for big things to do. Jesus took a towel . . . and began to wash the disciples’ feet.
A great way to start each day – to remind ourselves of both God’s mercy and the needs around us – could be to ask, “What part of the wall do you want me to work on today?” I am sure the Lord will let you know!