O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to fear Your name; and let Your servant prosper this day, I pray, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.” For I was the king’s cupbearer (Nehemiah 1:11).
When Nehemiah learned that Jerusalem’s wall was broken down and the gates were on fire, he wept. He mourned for several days. He fasted and prayed to God. His prayer is a wonderful model prayer. It follows this pattern:
Acknowledgment: O great and awesome God, You who keep Your covenant and mercy with those who love You and observe Your commandments
Confession: Your servant which I pray before You now, day and night, for the children of Israel Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, nor the ordinances which You commanded Your servant Moses.
Thanksgiving: Remember, I pray, the word that You commanded Your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations; but if you return to Me, and keep My commandments and do them, though some of you were cast out to the farthest part of the heavens, yet I will gather them from there, and bring them to the place which I have chosen as a dwelling for My name.’ Now these are Your servants and Your people, whom You have redeemed by Your great power, and by Your strong hand.
Supplication: O Lord, I pray, please let Your ear be attentive to the prayer of Your servant, and to the prayer of Your servants who desire to fear Your name; and let Your servant prosper this day, I pray, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.”
God answered Nehemiah’s prayer. The king granted Nehemiah’s request to return to Judah. The cupbearer prospered and was granted mercy in the king’s sight.
When we hear bad news we give ourselves time to deal with it like Nehemiah. He cried and mourned. Then, we reach out in faith. Nehemiah fasted and prayed. Then we act in faith. Nehemiah told the king the situation and what he needed and his request was granted.
Don’t let a bad situation keep you down for long. Turn it over to God and He will take care of it. The best weapon against adversity is prayer.