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Then I said to them, “You see the trouble we are in, how Jerusalem lies in ruins with its gates burned. Come, let us build the wall of Jerusalem, that we may no longer suffer derision.” And I told them of the hand of my God that had been upon me for good, and also of the words that the king had spoken to me. And they said, “Let us rise up and build.” So they strengthened their hands for the good work. […] So we rebuilt the wall till all of it reached half its height, for the people worked with all their heart. – Nehemiah 2:17-18; 4:6
When Nehemiah heard of the destruction in Jerusalem, he fell to his knees in repentance. After a period of prayer and fasting, he decided to use his influence and position to rebuild the city. He had never been to Jerusalem, yet he cared dearly about it. He knew that to rebuild the walls would bring glory to God and strength to God’s people. He determined, therefore, to commit his time, wealth, reputation, and life to the mission of rebuilding God’s holy city.
Although he faced a number of challenges and threats, he successfully led the Israelites to rebuild the walls and gates of Jerusalem. What had remained in rubble for years became beautiful and functional within only 52 days. While the walls were important, they were not the most significant achievement: along with restoring the walls, Nehemiah encouraged the people to restore their relationship with God. In short, the city was being transformed outwardly and inwardly because of one man’s passion to see God glorified.
Today, the walls in many of our cities are either collapsing or lying in ruins. Within the rubble, we can see families destroyed by lust, businesses decimated by greed, and churches divided by conflict. All around us we can see the impacts of people who have chosen to use their freedom to satisfy their sinful nature instead of serving God and one another in love.1 Our only right response to this destruction is to follow Nehemiah’s lead: to repent, pray, fast, plan, and then act on behalf of our cities.
In Jeremiah, God commands us to “seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf”.2 Salt & Light Global believes that to seek the welfare of a city requires both an individual and a corporate approach. In Salt & Light Global parlance, the individual approach is to become a Citizen Statesman, while the corporate approach is to rebuild “Brick-by-Brick”.
Brick-by-Brick is a consulting service Salt & Light Global offers to any community interested in rebuilding its walls on the foundation of First Principles. Since each community is different, Salt & Light Global will work with you to design plans particular to your situation. If you would like our help in rebuilding the walls of your city, please contact us.