As I reflect this morning about all that God is doing in the world, the United Methodist Church and especially Mandell, it's amazing! Everyday in the life of the church God is proving God-self to be real, relevant and active. As I look back over my one and a half tenure here I can not understand how persons question whether or not God is real? Surely God is, let's look at today's scripture for reflection:
The Future Glory of the Temple2In the second year of King Darius,1in the seventh month, on the twenty-first day of the month, the word of the Lord came by the prophet Haggai, saying: 2Speak now to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and to the remnant of the people, and say, 3Who is left among you that saw this house in its former glory? How does it look to you now? Is it not in your sight as nothing? 4Yet now take courage, O Zerubbabel, says the Lord; take courage, O Joshua, son of Jehozadak, the high priest; take courage, all you people of the land, says the Lord; work, for I am with you, says the Lord of hosts, 5according to the promise that I made you when you came out of Egypt. My spirit abides among you; do not fear. 6For thus says the Lord of hosts: Once again, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and the dry land; 7and I will shake all the nations, so that the treasure of all nations shall come, and I will fill this house with splendour, says the Lord of hosts. 8The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, says the Lord of hosts. 9The latter splendour of this house shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of hosts; and in this place I will give prosperity, says the Lord of hosts.
In the scripture the prophet Haggai has received a word from God about the previous temple (church) it once was great, beautiful and filled with persons, things, and activities. Now it lays in waste and ruin. But God is real and speaks to the prophet saying go and tell the people to get up and work for this is God house (church) and it's time to build. Once your done this new temple (church) will be better than it has ever been!
Friends, God is real and working within us, sending us to build the kingdom. Reminding us that the silver, the gold, all is God's. Teaching us if we listen and follow the works that our church will do will be better than ever. As I listened to the testimonies shared on yesterday I was overwhelmed by the move of God in this place. Indeed my heart was strangely warmed as person after person shared how through this church they feel comfortable in there own skin, they believe in themselves and also in God, they have seen a change in the community. YES God is real and is calling us like the persons in the text to BUILD the kingdom. Are you ready? Let's get to work!
Dear God, give us a mind to work, grant us the courage to work, equip us with the knowledge and wisdom to work on your behalf in your service. Amen.