Haggai-now that's a name that seldom comes up in conversation! Who is this mysterious Old Testament preacher and why should we heed his words? Recently, I had the chance to do some study and preaching in the Old Testament book of Haggai. It’s a short 2 chapter biblical text from an early prophet sent to the Israelite people returning from exile in 520 b.c. The people had returned and begun to rebuild the Temple, but got distracted and 16 years later, the project still sat incomplete. Haggai shows up to stir the people’s heart again – to return to their mission, live in their identity of God’s people and commit their hearts to new things God was up too among them.
Here’s some simple insights that have stuck with me and I’m still trying to apply to my life.
*Distractions have a way of detouring our attention. Our attention can begin to wander away from the most important and the most crucial. Detoured attention has a way of diluting our devotion. It becomes important to check myself often – to check my focus and where my attention is aimed.
*Priorities are always determined by the intensity of our pursuit. Our top pursuits are our top priorities.
*You will never fully eliminate distractions – you must learn to navigate through them…continually redirecting attention to what matters most. (this is all about heart focus)
*Can a life or a soul become stagnant? Sure, we may add in several adventures, experiences, responsibilities and roles into our lives, but if they’re not stirred by something greater, than they are simply additions and nothing more. Sometimes we need to experience some stirring within…
*Stirring a heart that sustains ~ can only come from God (Haggai 1:13-14)
*I believe ~ God is still in the stirring business. He wants to stir individual hearts and hearts of church’s… the question becomes – am I listening and asking for Him to stir my heart?
*As I pray for God’s stirring within – I need to live with a Holy Anticipation for what He will be up too… (Haggai 2) (also see: Ephesians 2:10/3:20-21)
In a future post, I’ll expand on the 2 other messages that the prophet Haggai gave to the people. But from what you see here or what you recall from the sermons – what’s 1 thing that stuck out to you – maybe God has you working on?