Nehemiah 3:14 is one of my new favorite verses. I’m sure I have read it many times before, but it never really had meaning to me until I was preparing to lead a devotion on Nehemiah rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem.
We were talking about the big job God has given our ministry and how every big job comes with menial tasks.
That’s where Mayor Malkijah comes in. In the verses before Nehemiah 3:14, you have terrific builders, who are just going crazy building the Valley Gate and continue building the wall for a length of about five football fields.
Then all of a sudden they got tired and quit. Could it be because they reached the Dung Gate?
I just have a feeling that repairing the Dung Gate was not the project’s most prestigious job. I don’t think that people were standing in line to repair it. Does anyone ever stand in line to do these seemingly insignificant jobs?
That is why I am so impressed that a mayor stepped up and made the repairs to the Dung Gate. What a leader! I can just see his re-election campaign advertising. No slandering the work, character, or political party of the guy he was running against, just a very simple but effective message. Something like, “Hello, my name is Malkijah. I repaired the Dung Gate.”
What? You actually let someone else have the spotlight and you took on the less prestigious role to serve your people?
People will not walk, they will run to follow a leader like this. They don’t care if he has dashing good looks. They don’t care if he has a silver tongue. He repaired the Dung Gate! And he didn’t complain or beat his chest, either. All he cared about was completing a major project for his people and his Lord.
The Dung Gate itself was rebuilt by Malkijah son of Recab, the mayor of the district of Beth Hakkerem: he repaired it, hung its doors and installed its bolts and bars. —Nehemiah 3:14, MSG
Prayer: Lord, we know that nothing big ever gets accomplished without leaders willing to tackle the menial, not-so-fun parts of the job. Give us leaders and make us leaders like Malkijah.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rick Davis is a Constituent Marketing Director in our Global Ministry Center in Colorado Springs, Colo.
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