A Call to Build the House of the LORD
1 In the second year of King Darius, on the first day of the sixth month, the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest:
2 This is what the LORD Almighty says: "These people say, 'The time has not yet come for the LORD's house to be built.' "
3 Then the word of the LORD came through the prophet Haggai: 4 "Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?"
5 Now this is what the LORD Almighty says: "Give careful thought to your ways. 6 You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it."
7 This is what the LORD Almighty says: "Give careful thought to your ways. 8 Go up into the mountains and bring down timber and build the house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored," says the LORD. 9 "You expected much, but see, it turned out to be little. What you brought home, I blew away. Why?" declares the LORD Almighty. "Because of my house, which remains a ruin, while each of you is busy with his own house. 10 Therefore, because of you the heavens have withheld their dew and the earth its crops. 11 I called for a drought on the fields and the mountains, on the grain, the new wine, the oil and whatever the ground produces, on men and cattle, and on the labor of your hands."
12 Then Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, Joshua son of Jehozadak, 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.
13 Then Haggai, the LORD's messenger, gave this message of the LORD to the people: "I am with you," declares the LORD. 14 So the LORD stirred up the spirit of Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and the spirit of Joshua son of Jehozadak, 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, 15 on the twenty-fourth day of the sixth month in the second year of King Darius.
I came across this chapter Saturday, and the chapter heading got my attention. See, we're in the middle of launching a capital campaign called "Destination Pinnacle" at my church. So I was very interested in what Haggai had to say.
All of it spoke to me. God saying it's time for His temple to be rebuilt. A land of people who just don't get it. God telling us how with Him we can have so much more, instead of the drought on the land, man, cattle, our labor that we've settled for. (Sound like our nation, anyone?)
But the best part is where God says, "I am with you."
I know the country is in a financial crisis. I know we can't find any gas. I know times are tough, and it probably doesn't seem like the right time to be building a church.
But in actuality it's the perfect time to build a church. Right now, it will be more evident to everyone just how much this project depends on God, and because of that He will be glorified.
We've already been assured that He's with us, and will help us throughout this process. We just have to have enough faith to believe that God is bigger than the Economy and can pull this off. We have to believe that it's OK for us to dream big (as Pastor Heath says) and give God a chance to show His power by making it come true.
What do you think, guys? Are you in?