By Steve Warman
I’d rather attempt to do something great and fail than to do nothing and succeed.
– ROBERT H. SCHULLER
The year is approximately 520 B.C.
A messenger named Haggai comes on the scene proclaiming with prophetic power the Word of the Lord for the people of his time.
Haggai’s ministry, recorded in the book which bears his name, covers only a span of four months—a rather short career with early retirement. However, in those weeks the Lord, through Haggai’s preaching, turned a spiritual situation around.
The prophet met with a generation of people who were discouraged. They had tried to rebuild their temple, but as they surveyed the structure, they it would never match the glory and splendor one in which their forefathers had worshiped. So gave up on the renovation.
“Consider your Ways”
Haggai arrives with a Word from God, proclaiming the problem wasn’t due to discouragement—it caused by disobedience.
He asked the people, “Why do you dwell in your beautiful homes while God’s house lies in ruins?”
Then the prophet declares, “Now therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts; Consider your ways. Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes” (Haggai 1:5-6).
Through this man of God, the Lord warned them if they didn’t change their ways a severe drought would come to destroy their land and cattle.
“Better than the Former”
The message put the fear of God into Zerubbabel and the other leaders. Immediately they ordered the people to begin repairing the house of the Lord.
During the restoration, God spoke through Haggai once more, saying, “The silver is mine and the gold is mine, saith the Lord of Hosts. The glory of this latter house shall be greater than that of the former, saith the Lord of Hosts: and in this place will I give peace, saith the Lord of Hosts” (Haggai 2:8-9).
God was explaining, “You are looking in the wrong place. Stop complaining over what has been taken and begin to see what you have left. What remains is Me! I have the gold and silver and I am not worried because there are things missing.”
The Lord promised, “I am going to fill this temple with my presence and the end of the story will be better than the beginning. If you are looking for a reason to build, stop looking at your materials, and start looking at Me. I am your reason to build.”
A Glory-Filled House
God is a God of divine restoration. With Him you will always end up with more than you had at the beginning. This is why we look forward to the glory of the church in these last days.
As the Lord declares, “I will shake the heave the earth, and the sea, and the dry land; And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory“(Haggai 2:6-7).
We serve the Master Architect. He is our reason to build.
The article “A Reason to Build” written by Steve Warman was excerpted from The Second Try: Your Best is Yet to Come, 2006.
This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes, “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”