Shoulder to Shoulder

When several people try to reach a common goal, they need to organize themselves and work together. This is the same in God’s kingdom. Working for the church or street evangelizing is also a matter of organizing and working together.

1 The high priest Eliashib and the other priests rebuilt the Sheep Gate and hung its doors. Then they dedicated the Sheep Gate and the section of the wall as far as the Tower of the Hundred  and the Tower of Hananel … 7 Melatiah of Gibeon, Jadon of Meronoth, and the men from Gibeon and Mizpah rebuilt the next section of the wall… 8 Uzziel son of Harhaiah, the goldsmith, rebuilt the next section. Hananiah, one of the perfume makers, rebuilt the section after that, and it went as far as the Broad Wall 

Nehemia 3:1,7 and 8 (NIV)   

After Israel lived in a foreign country for seventy years, one group returned and began to rebuild Jerusalem. Why? To avert mockery (see Nehemiah 2: 17b). It is about the glory of God. The walls of the city lay in ruins and this huge project could be carried out only by good organization and good cooperation.

Good Organization

The leader of this group is called Nehemiah. God had put a plan in his heart to rebuild the ruins (see Nehemiah 2:12). He organizes this major project by performing the following steps:  First, he examines the situation (Nehemiah 2:13) . You can’t make plans if you don’t know what needs to be done. Then, he tells the people his vision, born of his vocation ( Nehemiah 2:17-18). He conveys this vision to his audience so that they also have the desire to rebuild the walls and gates. This works because the people answered with the words: "Let's immediately start building ." Then he points each one of them to a place around the city, so that they will work simultaneously in several places. Chapter 3 is full of verses that begin with “next to him " or "in addition". People were building, shoulder to shoulder.

Good Cooperation

It doesn’t matter how good a project or enterprise is organized. If the people involved do not work together or are unwilling to do so, it will not succeed. Conveying a vision is an important aspect so that employees feel that it is their own project. This is also called ownership. The long list of workers, a few of which are mentioned in the main verse, shows that these people come from different backgrounds. A priest is working beside a goldsmith or apothecary. The differences are not significant (anymore) . When we work together in the Kingdom of God and we need to give people guidance, let us ensure that we have a clear vision, and convey this the right way. If we can cooperate in a team,  let us pray that we " may become infected " with the vision. We then put our differences aside and work together until the goal is achieved - to the glory of God.

Bible book: Nehemiah Keywords: Coöperation, Leadership, Organisation