"Uzziel - a goldsmith by trade, who also worked on the wall. Beyond him was Hananiah, a manufacturer of perfumes." (Neh. 3:8)
Reading: Nehemiah Chapter 3.
Confess the sins of previous Canadian Governments that condoned the genocide against indigenous nations, financially supported residential schools as a tool for "killing the Indian in the child". For not holding the Church-run residential schools to account for the poor conditions and abuse that took place. Ask for mercy so God will heal our land.
Pray for our government leaders and Parliament, that God would grant them leadership wisdom in policymaking.
Pray also for indigenous leaders for wisdom in leading their people through this time of mourning.
Ask the Lord for a great revival in our country and to raise up peacemakers in our land that will know how to lead and build a new peace that is Christ-centred.
Ask the Lord for a heart ready to serve.
Reflection on Nehemiah 3.
When we read lists in the Bible like here in chapter 3 where so-and-so built such-and-such, we have a tendency to skip over it or skim-read it. In doing so we miss out on some interesting details. Buried in the list, Nehemiah takes pains to point out that Uzziel was a goldsmith and Hananiah was a perfumer. Two very unlikely trades to be found building walls or doing manual labour of this kind.
How often I have heard a call go out from the pulpit asking for volunteers, only to overhear the response, "That's just not my gifting." I'm sure if anyone had a right to say; "wall building is not in my spiritual gift inventory," it was the jeweller and the perfumer. Yet, here they are, rolling up their sleeves and getting it done.
Another detail Nehemiah points out is sections of the wall were given to the families and clans that were adjacent to where they lived. What a genius piece of leadership, getting people to build the section of the wall that they were most invested in. Of course, they would take the greatest care in the section that gave them the most protection.
Regardless of gender, talent, gifting or prior experience, all the people worked together to rebuild the city walls and gates. They worked locally under the clan leadership, who in turn worked under the direction of the supervisors that had the bigger picture and they reported directly to Nehemiah who had the overall vision and authority to see the work completed.
All the clans, the priests and the other people were already resident in and around Jerusalem. Yet, the walls and the gates were never rebuilt until Nehemiah brought the vision from the Lord and organized the kingdom-building effort.