Nehemiah is a great example of a man who expected God to do what only God can do, but who also did everything he could. He was grieved about the condition of Jerusalem, but he didn't just despair over it. He prayed, pouring out his heart to God. And then he looked for way to improve the situation, using all his knowledge, experience, and organization into figuring out what needed to be done.
This is a great way to approach a crisis or time of tragedy. First, pray. Then find ways to move beyond grief into action, knowing that without God's strength, our own efforts are in vain.
So often we neglect the prayer part of that equation. Nehemiah didn't. His prayer was one of praise, thanksgiving, repentance, request, and commitment. This is a great prayer pattern to follow in order to put things into proper perspective and receive God's guidance on the situation.
Our NT parable illustrates that God expects us to use the gifts and talents He's given us for His kingdom. We will be held accountable for our stewardship.
Tomorrow's Bible In a Year Passage passage: Nehemiah 4-6; Luke 19:28-48