Come let us build the wall of Jerusalem…let us rise up and build.
Nehemiah 2:17–18 NLT

Remember the Lord, who is great and glorious, and fight for your brothers, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes.
Nehemiah 4:14 NLT

God had a job for Nehemiah. He was called to build a wall…16 feet tall, 3 feet thick, 4½ miles around. Just take a minute and read chapters 2 & 3 of Nehemiah (it’s in the Old Testament—the 16th book), and you’ll notice something. The builders were perfumers, goldsmiths, merchants and managers. All of them where stacking stones, building new gates and forging hinges and latches from steel. Notice anything? The builders weren’t “builders”! Where were the architects, carpenters, and masons? Nowhere to be found…and yet these non-skilled people built this amazing wall in 52 days!

Look at verse 16 of chapter 4:

“Those who labored on the wall, worked with one hand and held his weapon with the other.”

I love that picture. Everyone working together, muscles flexed, sword in one hand, cinderblock in the other. “Swords n’ Cinderblocks” from sunup till sundown for 52 days. This is a picture I tried to paint early on for our volunteers and attenders as we started the Galesburg Campus. My challenge to them was to “carry your sword”… That’s your personal walk with Christ, your devotional time, or your coffee time with Jesus. Then I challenged them …“pick up your cinderblock”… Serve somewhere. God wants to partner with you in reaching others who need to know that He loves them. You don’t have to know what your “gift” is…yet. Just try something.

Help build the wall. It might be holding a door before church starts or holding a baby so the parents can worship. It might be leading a small group of 3rd graders, or it might be fixing furniture at the Re:New Thrift Store. If it’s not a good fit, try something else.

So, as you look forward to the next year here at Northwoods, the next 52 Sundays…here’s my question to you: are you in? If your answer is “yes,” then pick up your sword and cinderblock and let’s build something great!

God has a job for you. It probably isn’t stacking stones and steel, but as a Christ follower, He has called you to help build His church. So, let’s get serving!

— Pastor Scott Cramer



Take some time to reflect on this question:

What specific talents, abilities or skills do you have that you feel God has given you?