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 (Manna 45: A Life of Servitude)
Remember Me, O My God
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Samuel Kuo — Hillsborough, New Jersey, USA

Unlike Abraham, he never heard the voice of God. Unlike Daniel, he never saw any visions nor witnessed prophetic dreams. Unlike Moses, he was never in the company of his God face to face. And unlike Elijah and Elisha, he never touched the dead so as to raise them.

Apart from having a heart to serve God, Nehemiah had only a small collection of experiences of God’s providence throughout his life mission. It was never anything as clear-cut and awesome as in the cases of the saints of old—never a grand vision, never a splendid, miraculous event.

Nevertheless, his heart fueled him to do great things for God: he lead the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem in fifty-two days, he suffered ridicule and harassment from neighboring foreigners, he fought injustice among the congregation, he reestablished God’s law, and he labored without end to keep the purity of his people.

It was through bitter tears that he served.  It was through thick and thin, disappointment and grief, anger and rebuke, barely peppered by rare moments of joy. It was through loving tears and toilsome labor that he loved God.

So Nehemiah cried, “Remember me, O my God, concerning this also, and spare me according to the greatness of Your mercy!” (Neh 13:22).

I find myself identifying a great deal with Nehemiah. In fact, I feel as if I can identify with him much more than with other servants recorded in the Bible.

Like Nehemiah, I have never heard the voice of God, never saw visions, never witnessed prophetic dreams, nor was I ever called by angels “greatly beloved” (cf. Dan 9:22). I have never beheld God face to face, nor have I resurrected the dead.

But like Nehemiah and much of the church congregation, I just try to do my best.

Nehemiah’s cry is the cry of the seemingly regular God-loving Christians. They are your typical servants, who dutifully do what they are assigned, who are faithful to His dear cause. It is the cry of those who “know” that God is with them but don’t necessarily feel it every day.

It is the cry of those who have never seen those wonderful visions, who have never dreamt those dreams, who have never really experienced a great miracle during their period of service. It is the cry of those of us who aren’t really sure if God works through us or not—who really aren’t sure if we have done well.

Day in and day out, though we pray, though we read the Bible, though our every intention is for the good of God’s business, though at points in our lives we feel close to Him, though we are moved every now and then, and though we serve Him continually, we are often unsure of where we stand in the presence of God.

And so our hearts utter the same cry.

Not that believers who have had these wonderful experiences have better faiths; neither do servants who have had these wonderful experiences escape from going through periods of wavering either.

In addition, not that we have been short-changed by God, for indeed, His grace is sufficient for us (cf. 2 Cor 12:9). But just that on the surface, it does seem that those servants—whether in the long past or in the present—are just that much closer and surer of God’s abidance and favor.

            “Remember me, O my God!” (Neh 13:31)

It is a cry of uncertainty; a cry of yearning; a cry, not for the remembrance of the work we’ve accomplished but for the most important remembrance and recognition—to be pleasing in God’s sight.

Let us serve God with our totality as Nehemiah did—through the pains and through the tears.

May we be remembered by God in the same manner He remembered Nehemiah. May we be a sweet-smelling aroma in His presence (cf. Eph 5:2).

            Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
Be acceptable in Your sight,
O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer. (Ps 19:14)

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Publisher: True Jesus Church