Think About This: “Encourage others each and every day–nothing’s more important than our words. Did you know that, on average, each of us speaks about twenty-five thousand words daily? My last book didn’t have that many words. A lot of language is flowing out of our mouths every day and having an impact on those around us. But how much of that flow is fulfilling God’s intended purpose for our speech? How much of it reflects pride, rather than a gospel-motivated humility?” ― C.J. Mahaney
Your Bucket Leaks
Posted on August 30, 2023 by Elizabeth Welte in Victory Call
Then the word of the Lord came by the hand of Haggai the prophet, “Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while this house lies in ruins? Now, therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider your ways. You have sown much, and harvested little. You eat, but you never have enough; you drink, but you never have your fill. You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm. And he who earns wages does so to put them into a bag with holes. Haggai 1:3-6
Haggai was used of God to re-energize the Israelites that had returned from the Babylonian exile. An edict by Cyrus allowed them to return to Jerusalem so they could rebuild the temple. When opposition arose, their efforts dwindled. God was calling them back to the job of rebuilding because the temple represented His dwelling amongst them.
“After the exile, the Lord is renewing his promises to his people and calls on them to finish rebuilding the temple so that he might be with them and fulfill his promises to bless the whole world through them.”[i]
Haggai told them that where they were placing their hope would never satisfy.
Have you ever noticed that things never seem to deliver the satisfaction we thought they would? Oh, maybe for a season… but not long term. It’s like we carry a bucket around putting this and that in it collecting all we can, only to get home to find this and that have leaked out the bottom of the bucket.
What pursuits in life are draining from your bucket, falling short of true and lasting satisfaction? You looked for much, and behold, it came to little. Haggai 1:9
What pursuits or people in my life am I substituting for God’s own presence? Do I really think my earthly substitutes will truly satisfy after, over and over again, my bucket ends up empty?
If you are born of God, a Christ-follower – He dwells in you. His Spirit resides in you. We don’t need a physical temple to dwell in and enjoy God’s presence. We are His temple. Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?[ii] I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.[iii]
We are continually and eternally in His presence.
Surely the righteous shall give thanks to your name; the upright shall dwell in your presence.[iv] You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.[v] “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.[vi]
Even as I am typing, the reminder stops me in my tracks. A God moment.
Why would we continue to collect things to put in our leaky bucket when we know and have the ONLY ONE TRUE SATISFIER that never leaves us with an empty bucket? Today, we need to heed the same warning that God gave the Jews, consider your ways (vs 5)
Written by Diane Hunt: Diane Hunt serves on the board of America’s Keswick and is the Executive Director & CEO of Changed Choices, a Christian non-profit in North Carolina. She is also a biblical counselor and women’s event speaker. For more information about having Diane speak at your next event please contact her at email@example.com.
This Week’s Verse to Memorize: “Now this is the main point of the things we are saying: We have such a High Priest, who is seated at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, 2 a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man.” – Hebrews 8:1-2