But I Replied…
“Then I was terrified, but I replied, ‘Long live the King! How can I not be sad? For the city where my ancestors are buried is in ruins, and the gates have been destroyed by fire’” (Nehemiah 2.2b-3 NLT).
Nehemiah, King Cyrus’s cupbearer and trusted servant, had never looked sad before the king during his work of service. The king instantly knew that Nehemiah was “deeply troubled.” King Cyrus asked Nehemiah, “Why are you looking so sad?” And with all eyes on him, Nehemiah was “terrified” to answer. Although it is not stated, Nehemiah most likely knew that he was staring into the face of the man who the prophet Isaiah prophesied 150 years earlier would help Israel rebuild their nation. A single, little conversation with so much at stake was about to change history. One prophesy, one request, one king – the weight of the moment must have been unbearable! But through his fear, Nehemiah simply writes, “…but I replied…” When Christians gain a promise from God, we do not have to fear the people, situations and obstacles that are in the way. God’s “yes” is the only ticket we need to enter our destiny, and He will ensure that people’s hearts and life’s circumstances will be swayed for our benefit when the time is right. So instead of allowing fear and doubt deter us from making our claim in faith, we need to fearlessly “reply” with our assurance in God’s faithfulness.
“I will raise up Cyrus to fulfill my righteous purpose, and I will guide his actions. He will restore my city and free my captive people—without seeking a reward! I, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, have spoken!” (Isaiah 45.13 NLT).