From Haggai: Lessons about Priority
In the short book of Haggai, the central theme is that God’s house (the temple) needs to be rebuilt. It lay in ruins. But the people have not done so because they are focused on their own houses and comfort. As far as God is concerned, their priorities are wrong. They’re putting themselves first and not concerned about him.
Three times God points this out, asking them to consider the quality of their lives. Things aren’t going well for them. Their efforts fail to produce the results they want, their plans don’t work out the way they expect, and they lack what they need.
After Haggai delivers God’s message to the leaders and the people, their response is to rebuild the temple. Then God promises to bless them.
When their priorities were wrong, things went wrong. When their priorities became right, God’s blessings resulted.
Although the conclusion isn’t absolute, it’s worth considering that when things are going wrong, it might be because our priorities are misaligned with God’s will for our lives and his desire for how we act.
Instead of blaming God when our lives are dissappointing, we might do better to blame ourselves, and then work to fix our priorities. It starts by putting God first.
Learn more about all twelve of the Bible’s Minor Prophets in Peter’s new book, Dear Theophilus, Minor Prophets: 40 Prophetic Teachings about Unfaithfulness, Punishment, and Hope
Peter DeHaan writes about biblical spirituality, often with a postmodern slant. He seeks a fresh approach to faith and following God through the lens of scripture, without the baggage of made-up traditions and meaningless practices. Read more in his books, blog, and weekly email updates.