Then Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest, and the whole remnant of the people obeyed the voice of the LORD their God and the message of the prophet Haggai, because the LORD their God had sent him. And the people feared the LORD. Then Haggai, the LORD’s messenger, gave this message of the LORD to the people: “I am with you,” declares the LORD. So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua son of Jozadak, the high priest, and the spirit of the whole remnant of the people. They came and began to work on the house of the LORD Almighty, their God, on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month.
The temple rebuilding effort got off to a great start. The people got to work, cleared the rubble, and built the foundation in two years. Of course, their success caught the attention of the neighboring countries. The opposition started. Instead of staying focused, the builders started to fear. Instead of pressing on, they gave in. They used the opposition for an excuse to quit. The great work the people had started was put on hold for eighteen years! Haggai called them back to work.
Any significant effort will draw criticism. Most people just don’t like change. For many the status quo is fine. But it’s not fine with God. This world is broken! Lethargy, laziness, turning a blind eye, pretending that disobedience is acceptable – ignoring the needs of others is not what God has called us to do. You may have a great spiritual foundation, but unfinished lives don’t honor God.
Here’s my challenge. Pray that God stirs your spirit. Pray that He moves you as He did with Zerubbabel and Joshua. Pray that His “I am with you” promise fills that spot in your heart where fear once lived. Begin today to build the life that God has called you to build! One day you will stand before Him to give an account. On that day, you’ll be glad that you finished the project.
Father, give us the courage to do what You have called us to do. And give us the urgency to get it done. Today, help us start or restart the work You have for us. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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