At this moment, our church is preparing to invest in a resource that will proclaim Jesus Christ as Lord and prepare His people to worship Him forever.
In the book of Haggai, we encounter a people who are in the midst of a building project. They are rebuilding the temple and their commitment is half-hearted. “The time has not yet come for the house of the Lord to be rebuilt,” they complain in Haggai 1:2. Droughts, political oppression, and selfish desires conspire to make building the Lord’s temple seem like wearisome labor.
God’s call on the people is simple: “put your heart on the road.”
The expression means to think deeply about the path you are travelling. As the Israelites look at their circumstances, they should realize that the selfish path they are on yields no lasting joy: “You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away” (v. 9). Satisfaction, says the Lord, will only come from pursuing Me. Despite the obstacles, put Me first!
The questions before those of us whom God calls to participate in the ministry of Bethany are relatively simple: Do I have a passion for God? If so, is that love for His glory manifested by my use of the resources He has given us?
These are questions my family joyfully wrestled with over the past few months and years as we anticipated investing in this building and the ministries that will be done through it in the future.
Brothers and sisters, aren't you glad God brought us as a family to this point? We have a tangible way to evaluate use of the resources God has given us, to “put our heart on the road.” The building ministry will challenge us to think through all areas of our life.
I believe that over the coming weeks, God’s people are going to demonstrate their desire to see His glory manifested through the ministries at Bethany by giving generously and joyfully.
I do not know exactly what that will look like. But I’m excited I get to go through it with you. I’m excited that we get to “put our heart on the road” together!