Two weeks ago, Madi came home with a negative hearing test from school. After two failed hearing attempts at school, we had to pursue a formal hearing screening. As we settled into the sound proof booth, the “games” began. Madi was to put a block next to her cheek and drop it in the bucket when she heard the ding in her ear. We did well- at first. But, as time progressed, she became more intrigued with the blocks than the test. I knew the moment I lost her. I handed her a long circular block. She held it next to her cheek. A second later, the block was Madi’s new mustache. Hearing test? Forgotten! The Audiologist redirected her attention to the test. A few minutes later, also during the test, Madi struck up a conversation about what was on the block, again, paying no mind to the fact that she was supposed to be “listening” for beeps. Long story short, with a little redirection, she passed her hearing test. But, what sticks with me was how the testing would have come out had she not been redirected. When she was paying attention to what she was supposed to be doing, she had exceptional hearing. However, when she was doing her own thing, her hearing health fell way below the line. She was deaf to everything but her own purpose in that that moment.
Yesterday, I was reading the account of Haggai the prophet, and this verse struck my attention regarding another group of people needing redirection.
“Then the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying, “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, and this temple to lie in ruins? Now, therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: “Consider your ways!” “You have sown much, but bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but are not warm; Ane he who earns wages, Earns wages to put in a bag filled with holes.”
Thus says the Lord of hosts; “Consider your ways! Go up to the mountains and bring wood and build the temple, that I may take pleasure in it and be glorified”, says the Lord. You looked for much, but indeed it came to little; and when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why?” says the Lord of hosts. “Because of My house that is in ruins, while every one of you runs to his own house.” Haggai 1: 3-9
Haggai brought this message to the people of Judah and Jerusalem after they began the work of rebuilding the temple but soon became discouraged with the mission God gave to them. They stopped building when the going got tough. They made excuses. The reasoned that the temple they would create would never be as marvelous or beautiful as what Solomon had. So they lost focus. They attended to themselves and they were spinning their wheels. All of their work ended in ruin. They were financially and spiritually devastated personally and as a nation. Why? Because they simply needed a little redirection.
“…and be strong all you people of the land, ‘ says the Lord , ‘and work: for I am with you” , says the Lord of hosts. (Haggai 2:4) The story of the people of Judah and Jerusalem caused me to stop and take note. Am I doing the work I am supposed to be doing? Or and I simply working for my own purpose and pleasure? I don’t wish to spend the majority of my time spinning my wheels. My prayer, this week, is for redirection and restoration from a God who longs for His temple to be built to its full glory in my life.