Perspiration: Nehemiah Involves The People
At first glance, Nehemiah 3 is a chapter filled with lists of names of people and locations in Jerusalem, most of which are difficult to pronounce. It is tempting to skip over chapter three and take up the story again in chapter four. But upon closer examination, chapter three outlines the principles that led to the success of the project.
First, notice the principle of coordination. Every person knew where he belonged and where he was to work. We see this in phrases such as “next to him,” or “beside his house.”
Second, notice the principle of cooperation. People of all ages and from all walks of life cooperated to achieve a common objective.
Third, notice the principle of commendation. This principle is more implied than stated in the chapter, but we can see it illustrated in the fact that Nehemiah knew the names of the people who were working and noticed the work they did. He acknowledged the work of each individual. We can imagine what an encourager Nehemiah must have been as he supervised the work and thanked the people for their involvement.
Fourth, notice the principle of communication. We must not overlook the fact that Nehemiah had to communicate with the people about the work. He had to assign leaders, make work assignments, give instructions, delegate authority, and answer questions. He kept the channels of communication open. Thus, the fact that the work was coordinated, the people cooperated and were commended, and the lines of communication were open all contributed to the success of the project.
Nehemiah teaches us the importance of encouraging others.
Nehemiah 3 is a testimony to the fact that Nehemiah was a “people-person.” He noticed and affirmed the work of those who were helping to reconstruct the wall. He was an encourager. He knew how to develop morale in the workplace.
There are three “morale-mashers” in the workplace: First, lack of appreciation from those above us. Second, lack of cooperation from those around us. Third, lack of commitment from those below us. Nehemiah worked to keep the “morale-mashers” out of the workplace.