“When Sanballat the Horonite, and Tobiah the servant, the Ammonite, heard of it, it grieved them exceedingly that there was come a man to seek the welfare of the children of Israel” (Nehemiah 2:10).TEXT — Nehemiah 2:9-11
Sir Winston Churchill, a two-time Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, was best known for his doggedness and inspiring speeches that helped to see Britain through World War II. Here is what he had to say about enemies (of progress): “You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life”. That was his way of saying that you cannot make significant progress in this life without attracting enemies.
Nehemiah stood up for something in his life. His progressive move to restore the glory of Jerusalem and the welfare of the Jews attracted the onslaught of vicious enemies headed by Sanballat and Tobiah. This duo and their cohorts were comfortable with the poor state of Jerusalem and the returned Jewish exiles as long as they remained desolate and vulnerable.
Nevertheless, as soon as they heard that Nehemiah had received commission to return to rebuild the walls of the city, they were exceedingly grieved. Meanwhile, Nehemiah and his team did not let the hatred and hostility meted out by these enemies of progress to distract or discourage them. They eventually finished the work.
Today, there are Sanballats and Tobiahs who show up each time you make progress towards a noble goal. They can be found in every sector of life. Some may come with insincere behaviour, pretending to be friends while others may be confrontational.
If you run into such enemies of progress, handle them like Nehemiah. Remain prayerful and focused on your divinely appointed goal. Before long, their hatred will turn into motivation for greater achievement.
Thought for the day
Do not allow enemies to steal your momentum.
- in one year
- 2 KINGS 7 – 8