February 1, 2024 Devotional by Rose-Marie Slosek
“Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while this house lies in ruins?” (Haggai 1:4 ESV)
It is easy, especially amongst the comforts of the western world, to become focused on our own interests, even our own spiritual interests, and forget that we should be focused on our Father’s business. As Jesus was found in the temple when He was expected to be on his way back to his natural family’s home in Nazareth, He was surprised that His parents didn’t know where to find Him. Our interests: where our time is spent, our focus, and our passions, predict where we will be found.
The prophet Haggai speaks forth the heart of God to the people and the leaders of Israel. He tells them that they are putting their own lives, their own needs, their own interests before the restoration of the house of God. Cyrus had permitted them to return to their land, but rebuilding the temple was a tall order and would require much attention and work. It was easier to focus on what they needed for their own lives rather than giving all their attention to rebuilding His House so they could all honor God and worship Him together.
Has anything changed? We must admit that we sometimes neglect the corporate nature of our lives together. As Christians, we are living stones that are being built together! We cannot isolate from each other. We can find ourselves distracted from doing our Father’s business together by self-interest and self-seeking.
Perhaps we should be to ourselves as Haggai, a prophet, calling ourselves back to rebuilding the house of God. We need to examine what has fallen in the Body of Christ and what does not honor, represent, or glorify Him. We need to call each other back to a burning passion to see the glory of God come fully to the house of God, of which all believers are members. Zeal for His house should consume us. Holiness should refine us. Passion for His purposes should inflame us. Wholeheartedness should drive out any lesser preoccupation.
Part of the Maranatha cry is a cry for the house of God to be whole, for Jesus to rule over us and to have our entire hearts. Let us lavish our full attention upon Him as we prepare for the fullness of the coming age! He shall surely have our attention and Israel’s on the Day that He returns. We who know Him and love Him should be both hastening that Day not only with the Maranatha cry, but also living together in a corporate foretaste of the fullness of His coming glory. Maranatha.
Rose-Marie Slosek came to know the Lord in the early nineteen seventies and has a passion for organic church and the maturing of the Body of Christ. She loves to connect people and build healthy community in small groups. She travels widely and assists several mission teams. Rose-Marie also serves Women of the Word on their Board of Directors. She can be reached at email