Formations 11.06.2022: Rebuilding

Haggai 1:1-11, 14-15

It’s easy to put off the things of God. Many of us struggle to make it through each work week, longing for the weekend only to watch it fly by once it arrives. And then we have to start all over again. We may worry about bills, house repairs, children, pets, parents and other family members, car trouble, inflation, sickness, deadlines, and so much more. We are consumed by our to-do lists that never feel completed. The things of God are often an afterthought. We may say a few words to God in our heads as we try to fall asleep at night, but often our brains wander off to other subjects.

In today’s text, God’s people keep putting off what God wants them to do. As God reveals through the prophet Haggai, “These people say the time has not yet come to rebuild the Lord’s house” (v. 2). We may wonder why. They had a good excuse at first. They had lived in another land as exiles for decades. Surely it took time to regroup and recenter themselves once they returned to their home. Now, though, it’s been at least twelve years. Their excuse is wearing thin. The “grace period” for recovery is over. They can no longer put off the things of God.

Haggai tells the people that all the struggles they are dealing with—scarcity of food and drink, inadequate clothing, insufficient funds—are a result of putting off God. The solution to their needs is to start rebuilding God’s house. When they focus on the things of God, their perspectives will change. Instead of obsessing over what they lack, they will be thankful for what God has done.

We are busy. We are stressed. We are overwhelmed by the rush of life and everything we have to do. But maybe some of this pressure is a matter of perspective. What would happen if we turned back to the things of God? How would our outlook change if we focused on God’s blessings? How would we perceive our own needs if we looked outward and served others with the love of God?

If we’re feeling overwhelmed, if we’re tired and hungry and thirsty and broke, maybe it’s time to refocus on God. Maybe it’s time to rebuild our relationship with the Lord who loves us. Maybe it’s time to shift our priorities back to God so that we see our lives in a different light.


• What are your most pressing worries? How do you deal with them?
• How often do you focus on the things of God in your daily life?
• Why is it sometimes easy to put off working on our relationship with God?
• Do you think your struggles would miraculously disappear if you refocused on God, or is it simply that you would perceive your struggles differently?
• What steps can you take this week to rebuild your relationship with God? How can you establish a mindset that perceives difficulties through God’s perspective?

Kelley Land, a graduate of Mercer University, has been an assistant editor of Smyth & Helwys curriculum and books since 2001. In addition to this work, she is a freelance editor for other publishers and authors. She also regularly volunteers for Jay’s HOPE, a nonprofit serving families of children with cancer. Kelley enjoys spending time with her teenage daughters, Samantha and Natalie, her husband John, and the family’s two dachshund mix pups, Luke and Leia. She likes supporting community theater productions and is often found playing board games with a group of rowdy friends. She loves Marvel, Star Wars, Harry Potter, and Doctor Who. And she writes middle grade and young adult fiction for the pure joy of it.


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