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It isn’t every bad news that is meant to kill us. Perhaps the bad news is timely because we are too comfortable where we are? The story was told of Nehemiah. He was the king’s cupbearer and he lived in the palace. Nehemiah was at a place of comfort. In fact, his very name means ‘Jehovah comforts’. He enjoyed every good thing you can imagine, until Hanani, his brother, appears on the scene with bad news! (Nehemiah 1:1-4).
Suddenly, this all-too-comfortable Nehemiah couldn’t hold back his sorrow, his comfortable dwelling became thorns in his flesh, his soul lost every merry-making to become a whisperer of dirges, his mind became a fertile ground for afflictions unseen, and his eyes could only see through the blurry lens of tears. These were all because he heard bad news from Hanani, his brother. What was this bad news? Jerusalem, his hometown, was in ruins. The walls were broken down and the inhabitants were at the mercy of armed and wicked bandits.
The pride of his life, Jerusalem, was now a place of shame. In life, we all face such situations. Oftentimes, what we pride ourselves in can become a source of pain for us. We do not know where to turn and some may even question God’s love for them. We believe Nehemiah teaches us something we often forget. The bad news he received could lead him to despair. Only this time, it would drive Nehemiah to a place of prayer, to a place where only God was the answer to impossibility, above all, to a place of intimacy with God. The bad news wasn’t meant to kill him, it drove him to a deeper relationship with God. Dear reader, may every bad news in your own life drive you into a place of fellowship with God today. May your sadness become a vehicle to carry you into His presence. May your sorrow move you into His arms of rest. You will not die, that bad news will bring you to a place of strength. Believe it. Believe God. Be unwavering in your faith. Your story has just begun. The bad news of the death of Jesus soon became the good news of the Gospel of salvation. Be strong. Be encouraged today!