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Repairer of Broken Down Walls                                       Merilee Ottoson    

Upon hearing that the walls of the city of Jerusalem lay in ruins, Nehemiah, a servant of the King, traveled “home” to become a “rebuilder”. In this Old Testament book which bears his name, the situation that Nehemiah encountered was disheartening! (Nehemiah chapters 1-4) He is told that his Jewish brethren are in distress, the wall is broken down and the gates of the city were burned! Receiving permission from the King to travel to Jerusalem, Nehemiah is thwarted by provincial governors along the way. These men conspired to travel to the site and destroy the work of the Jewish people as they rebuilt the walls. In fact, Nehemiah 4:17, describes the rebuilders as doing their work with one hand and carrying a weapon with the other!

There are times when we may experience the same discouragement that Nehemiah felt. We want to follow God and the path He has set for us. However, at times we feel as though we “move two steps forward and three steps back!!”

I pray the following statements will help us fight discouragement in our service for God.

1. Acknowledge the problem and realize who the enemy is! We often feel as though we are fighting people, when in reality, it is satan who has moved in and is prowling as the unseen enemy.   “Our struggle is not against flesh and blood…..but against the spiritual forces of wickedness….”Ephesians 6:12

2. Overcome attacks by taking wise defense measures—set your “defense” in place! In everyday situations… living out our daily lives, sharing the Gospel or working to reconcile relationships/situations, we can prepare ourselves. Wearing the armor that God has provided us in Ephesians 6:10-18 is the best way to move forward. Any trained warrior will prepare himself with gear and weapons BEFORE going into battle so that he can be successful.

3. Face false accusations with insight and courage. Satan is the father of lies and would love to disrupt or destroy your plan of ministry. “…he is a liar and the father of lies…”John 8:44 “Greater is He who is in you…”I John 4:4

Father, give us the strength and discernment to repair broken down walls in our lives and in the lives of those we love…





His Nature                                                                        Merilee  Ottoson

He plays for “keeps” and he does not give up easily. Liar…..discourager….destroyer…..thief…. are a few of the names by which he is known.

“He was a murderer from the beginning and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in Him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from His own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” (John 8:44)  

Know satan for who he is…….know his nature. His nature is that of lies. So because his nature is lies, then we can be certain that there is NO TRUTH in him!! Our first understanding of satan is in the Garden of Eden in the book of Genesis. He appears as a serpent and acts as a deceiver…..and is successful. God uses this event in the garden to serve as an early warning of what and who our adversary is.

Yes…he is our adversary….enemy….foe. His power does NOT match that of our almighty God. He is not all powerful….neither is he all knowing. HOWEVER, Ephesians 6:12 describes him and his forces as being the “spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places”.

Does this all seem too “spooky spiritual”? I hope not. If we think that satan wears a red suit and jumps out at us once in a while to bring us a trial or give us a “bad day” ….we are dead wrong. If you are a true follower of Jesus Christ….he is your enemy. He does not play fair…and will attack us at our weakest point. We must keep our guard up, eyes open and walk in the spirit.

How can we be victorious against this foe?

** There is never a better time than NOW to be reading and meditating on God’s Word. We                   can see the counterfeit coming if we are saturated with the truth.

**Scan the horizon….is a storm brewing? Be proactive and help put a stop to the problem by not allowing yourself to become part of it.

**Keep a pure heart before the Lord.      “He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false…..” (Psalm 24:4)

**Satan will take as much ground as we allow him. If we open areas of our life to him, he will gladly take the foothold.      “Be alert…your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour…”(I Peter 5:8)

Pray with me…….

“I will not give up ground easily….I will fight to the end….and I will be victorious because this strength I walk in is NOT my own. It is His….the One who died for my sin, fought the fight for me and already reigns victorious. I will not fear satan….rather I will be AMAZED by God.”