Bible Verse: This is what the Lord Almighty says, “Give careful thought to your ways.” Haggai 1:7
By clicking the above song title, you will be directed to a video of our worship song for today. Hope you enjoy this song selected specifically to go along with our devotion!
If you have a minute, hop over to Haggai 1 (click the link in blue) and read the chapter, its not too long, I promise. But here is my summary of Haggai chapter one, weaved together with what God is teaching me thru this book.
God’s temple needs to be rebuilt, the exiles began the work and then slacked off.
My body is a temple of God – Corinthians 6:19 says “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own.”
When I think about my body a place for the Holy Spirit to reside, I am more apt to take better care of it.
But just like God’s people in Jerusalem in 520 B.C., I have slacked off. I start a diet or exercise plan, but as soon as it get’s hard or I start to “not feeling it”, I quit. My temple is in ruins right now, I am overweight and never exercise. I believe that God has called me to study the book of Haggai, not to make me feel bad, but to encourage me to rebuild my temple.
Haggai has been sent to them to encourage them to finish what they started. God spoke thru Haggai and wanted to know why they were busy with their fancy lives and homes and His house was laying in ruins?
Sometimes I need to ask for help in my journey of weight loss, and luckily, I have lots of friends who can and are willing to help and encourage me! I exchange recipes with some of the girls in my Small Group, I take walks with my neighbors and I call my sisters for encouragement to stick to my boundaries.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 says, “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”
I am grateful to all the people God sent into my life that build me up and encourage me!
I don’t want to ignore the second part of that verse in Haggai that says that God has spoken and asked them why they were worried about their own stuff and allowing His house to remain in ruins? I think that I need to answer that question.
There are two parts to weight loss –my boundaries and my mind set. This question pertains to both. Why do I think I need fancy foods, comfort foods, too much food? And why are my thoughts more concerned with my own comfort and getting my own way verses having a mind that has been renewed with God’s truths?
God say’s twice in chapter one “Give careful thought to your ways”. He tells them to take a hard look at their lives and think it over.
Give careful thought to my ways…. this is not to be taken lightly. I am carefully looking at my ways regarding eating and exercise and putting intentional time into setting boundaries and learning what it means to renew my mind.
He said to them that even though they planted much, they harvested little, no matter how much they ate, they were hungry. No matter how much they drank they were thirsty.
When I don’t put Christ first in my life, God cannot bless my efforts. It is that simple. I have seen this truth many times. Every time that I switch it back to putting God first, He is faithful to bless my efforts.
He tells them to go up the mountain and get the supplies to build His house so that God can take pleasure in it and be honored.
This may be the most profound truth learned for me in the chapter. He tells them to go up the mountain…..He does not say sit here and wait for the supplies to just show up, or to wait until it feels like the right time, or wait until tomorrow and then start…no He tells them to go up the mountain. This is going to take effort and exertion. They are going to sweat and work hard.
In 1 Corinthians 10:31 it says, “Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”
Losing weight is not just about me, it’s about God. This bible verse says that EVERYTHING, including our food, is to be for the glory of God. God wants to take pleasure in my temple and be honored thru my life.
This extra weight is keeping me from doing ministry. I have been called into ministry. And even more than that, I asked God to give me a ministry. He is honoring my deepest desires by doing so and wants to do so much more thru me.
“We are not angels, pursuing God without physical covering, and if we try to pretend that we are – living as though the state of our bodies has no effect on the condition of our souls – all the proper doctrine in the world can’t save us from eating away our sensitivity to God’s presence or throwing away years of potential ministry if we wreck our heart’s physical home” (Gary Thomas).
God then brings forth a drought on all that they have and enjoy, the fields, the grains, the wine, the olive oil…. EVERYTHING!
God will do anything to call us back to Him, sometimes I feel like my relationship with God is like a bungee cord, I fall so far and then He bounces me back into his embrace.
Then the people obeyed the prophet Haggai, because the Lord had sent him, and they feared the Lord.
To reach my weight loss goals, I will need discipline. I need to know how to obey God and I need to have a holy fear of the Lord.
In Corinthians 9:27 it says, “But I discipline my body and bring it into subjection, lest when I have preached to others I myself should become disqualified.
God, through Haggai said, “I am with you” So the Lord stirred up the spirit and they came and began to work on the house of the Lord Almighty, their God!
My heart is so excited about this part. I DO NOT have to do this alone! God is with me and more than that He has stirred up the spirit in my temple and the work has begun. I can close my eyes and picture the spirit within me swirling around in my stomach ready to start that mountain climb! Who’s with me?
Heavenly Father, forgive me for allowing my temple to go to ruins. Thank you for your kindness and gentleness with me as I look to You for help in rebuilding Your temple. Amen