Leadership Lessons You Can Take From Nehemiah

Barbara Graves —  May 17, 2011

Nehemiah was a leader, chosen by God to do amazing things in Jerusalem’s history.  But first, he was the cup bearer to the king in a country where his people were slaves.  He was so far from doing the work that God had for him to do, yet every step he took while serving the king was putting everything in place for what he would do for God later.  Nehemiah gave us two great principles that volunteer leaders will be wise to follow.

1. Keep your heart on the passion that God has put inside of you.

Nehemiah’s heart was still in Jerusalem.  When his brother came from Jerusalem, Nehemiah asked about his homeland.  The reply broke his heart,

“When I heard these things, I sat down and wept. For some days I mourned and fasted and prayed before the God of heaven.”

When was the last time that we’ve let the need for our ministry move us to weep? Just because he was far away didn’t lessen Nehemiah’s heart for his people or his passion.

2. Keep your hand on the task God has put before you.

Nehemiah was serving as cup bearer to the king.  It was a position that he didn’t apply for, in a country where he didn’t want to live.  Yet that “job” was the source of every resource that he would need down the road to do the ministry that God had for him to do.

Don’t discount what you do.  God has a plan for you that includes where you are today.  Do your best.  Be the high standard.  And when time comes, your faith will be the source of your favor.

No matter what your “day job” or “night job” may be, God has His hand in it and a plan for it.  Keep your heart to God and your hand to the task.  God will bless faithfulness.


Barbara Graves

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Barbara is a married mother of 4 grown kids. She is the volunteer Children’s Pastor at Momentum Church in Woodstock, GA where she oversees kids from birth to 5th grade. She can often be found driving around north Georgia, usually with a cup of coffee in her hand.