by Roger Thomas

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Nehemiah: Rebuilding Life's Ruins (7 of 10)
Through the Bible
Roger Thomas
Nehemiah 2:11-18

Introduction: Rebuilding is never easy. It is often harder than starting from scratch. Some of you have had to rebuild—after a fire, a flood, tornado, maybe a drought! The city of New York is doing that right now. Hundreds of families in the fire-ravaged west are doing it as we speak. You know neighbors who have had to rebuild.

Fortunately, I have never had to deal with such a loss. Rose's family suffered a fire when she was child. They moved next door for several months and eventually moved back in after the house was restored.

We had a close call in 1996 when the city of Aurora, IL received 17 inches of rain in twenty-four hours. It was when we woke up on the mid-July morning that we learned our house was the highest on the block. Hundreds of homes in the city were flooded. A couple of large subdivisions were almost total losses.

I remember visiting with an elderly couple from our church who lived in one of those areas. Water had filled their finished basement and risen a good four feet into the main floor. Their furniture, appliances, cars, almost everything they owned except for the clothes on their backs and a few boxes of family pictures they had put on high shelves as they fled the approaching water were totally saturated and quickly mildewing. The entire house was to be stripped to the studs, treated for water damage and mold, and rebuilt. In their seventies, the Clarks wondered if they were up to it. Anyone would!

Sometimes the hardest rebuilding is emotional. Restoring a house is much easier than rebuilding a life after the loss of a loved one, a marriage, health, or a major disappointment. Putting the pieces of life back together after a devastating loss or personal failure is hard discouraging work. Everyone wonders, when in the midst of the rebuilding process, is it worth the effort?

Nehemiah is a book about re ...

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