God does not alter his requirements of us dependant on the circumstances we find ourselves in. God, who is Holy, desires we obey him, that we love him and love others at all times. Our faith in Christ is such that our circumstances don’t dictate our relationship with Christ, our faith does. Our circumstances are changing and moving all the time. Christ is our rock! He alone “is my rock and my salvation…”

The Christian life is about altering our standards daily to honour him. We make decisions that honour him; we conduct ourselves in a manner that honours him. “I am doing a great work, and I cannot come down…” Nehemiah said to his opponents. This one line (in context) tells us a lot about the man. It speaks of Nehemiah’s commitment, his heart for and identity in God, the certainty of his role and calling.

Nehemiah was rock solid and uncompromising in his standards. He was saying: “I’m doing what God has called me to do and I will not be distracted from it”. In the process, taking a stand for what he believed was right in the Lord, what truth was and what was of benefit to the city and its people. We can learn a lot from the posture, the prayer and the attitude of Nehemiah, who in the face of extensive and prolonged criticism said: “the gracious hand of my
God on me” (2:18) “The God of heaven will give us success” (2:20) “Remember the Lord, who is great and awesome, and fight for your families” (4:14)

I believe Nehemiah understood what holiness meant. Motivated by God’s holiness, motivated to honour the Lord at every point, motivated to acknowledge him, was what anchored Nehemiah. We need not be distracted from what we’re called to do, and what we do are the great things, the kingdom things motivated to honour God in all our circumstances. Paul defined this pursuit like this: “forgetting what is behind, straining toward what is
ahead”. Because “just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy because I am
holy.” (1 Peter 1:15,16)