My desire is to finish up the talk called, “Realizing your Dream.” This has been fun and informative for me. God has shown me things during this teaching that have been new revelation. I hope that this will prove to help you as it has helped me.
The final subject is entitled, “Building something that will outlast you.”
A God given dream is not built upon the wit and wisdom of a man. Not to say that God does not use us in the building of His kingdom but what He builds is built in such a way to outlast the person who carries the dream. I know that certain things have a “spiritual shelf life;” that is that they are only designed to meet a specific need for a specific period of time. Often God builds something that transcends time and change. Jerusalem’s walls were built to last. But remember – it wasn’t walls that God was concerned about – He was concerned about the people of Israel. Therefore, it would take more than rebuilding walls to keep the Jerusalem Nehemiah was sent to rebuild intact for the long term!
It would take reform: a change in the hearts of the people to keep the dream alive for the long term. I want to take a look at reforms that are needed to keep a dream alive when the carrier of the dream is no longer alive.
- Word based leaders
Nehemiah knew that for Jerusalem to continue as a city, leaders were needed who would act according to the word of God.
Read NEHEMIAH 7:1-2
Nehemiah chose his brother Hanani to take charge of Jerusalem not because he was his brother but because he was a faithful man who feared God more than many. If a dream is going to live beyond the life of the leader, it is going to have to be passed down to faithful people who will see that God stays in charge of the dream. In building the church of Jesus Christ, Paul instructed his son in the faith, Timothy to find people who can carry on the dream:
“And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable people who will also be qualified to teach others.” 2 Timothy 2:2
If you want your dream to continue beyond your life, you are going to have to take the risk to train up God fearing leaders who will be qualified to take charge of the dream’s fulfillment and continuance. Not only must they be qualified to manage the dream but to grow the dream through raising up others who will take responsibility for the dream!
When looking for a suitable leader remember this: talent showcases a dream but character carries a dream! When looking for leaders, choose character over talent!
Who is with you in your dream who is “like-minded?”
“But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, that I also may be encouraged when I know your state. For I have no one like-minded, who will sincerely care for your state. For all seek their own, not the things which are of Christ Jesus. But you know his proven character, that as a son with his father he served with me in the gospel.”
You need to find your “Timothy” and equip him to work the dream!
- Word based practices
Nehemiah made decisions based upon two factors: prayer and the Word. He didn’t go out and hire a business consultant but relied upon the Word of God for direction.
He made sure that the dream was financed according to the word of God. He built a sense of community in his dream by keeping God directed celebrations. He established a continuing foundation for the dream by keeping repentance and covenant at the forefront of the dream. He ensured the success of the dream by establishing business practices that honored God and were word based. He protected the dream by keeping people who were not of the covenant from making league with his people. He enforced the dream by correcting those who chose practices that operated in contradiction to the dream.
These principles will turn a secular dream into a sacred one! By keeping them, any environment can be turned into a ministry environment!
I’m for your God given dream! But, more importantly, if God is for you, who can be against you! It’s time to get busy taking the first step to your dream fulfillment!