“‘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'” (Hag. 1:9)
Nowadays, young people focus their energy more and more on the search for a good career and economic stability. Pursuing financial security and well-being demands time, whereas economic stability and money can give the feeling of security. However, only one thing can give life, and that is wisdom: “For wisdom is a defense as money is a defense, But the excellence of knowledge is that wisdom gives life to those who have it” (Eccl. 7:12). Wisdom is the word of God, which is God Himself (John 1:1).
We don’t want to discourage the young ones to pursue a career; this is actually excellent. But we would like to call their attention to the danger of spending all their energy and time, forgetting to enjoy God’s life and to cooperate with Him. In the same way we employ our biological life to fulfill our purposes, God’s life can be useful to fulfill His purposes.
First of all, we have to mention the commitment we have towards God. First Corinthians 6:20 says, “For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body.” Christ gave His blood for us and now we are His property. He saved us from death and we owe Him our lives. “ For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.” (2 Cor. 5:14-15). The Lord does not force us to serve Him; He constrains us with His love. We live today to the One who died for us and resurrected. We also live through Him, because He is our life and, without Him, we would die. “In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him” (1 John 4:9). We only live because of Him, therefore we give our lives to Him. We also know that He takes care of us and we are able say just as Samuel did, “Thus far the Lord has helped us” (1 Sam. 7:12b).
“For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body” (1 Cor. 6:20)
Seeing this — and there are more verses that can confirm our commitment to God — we are constrained to renew our consecration. However, we may then realise that we take much more care of our own things and goals, even though we were conquered by the Lord. Little we seek Him, and there is not much time we leave to do His will.
We often take vows such as, “When I have more time, I’ll to go out and preach the gospel and serve the church” or, “When I have more time, I’ll read the Bible” or even, “When I have more money, I will offer…” This is an old kind of vow and it doesn’t please God.
Haggai 1:9 says: “‘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.'” How many times do we find ourselves looking for much? We look to have a great amount of time, we look to have a lot of money, we look to have a lot of willingness… The enemy of God imprisons us in such environment and promises of “When I have… I will…” and each time we look for more and more things for ourselves, and have less and less for God. The much is actually little. We look for more time, but we leave less of it for God. We look for better financial stability, but donate less to God. We steal everything for ourselves, while the Lord is asking for labourers (Mat. 9:38).
The result of all of this is that, over time, we have less life. We are getting increasingly empty of God’s life within us because we lack wisdom. Not human wisdom, but the one which gives us life, true wisdom (Eccl. 7:12). Our speaking becomes limited to what we look for in the world, like exams, school, work, fitness etc, and little life flows from us. Oh Lord Jesus! May this generation of young people be saved! The Lord wants to save us.
In order to save us, the Lord insists in calling us. In Song of Solomon 5 we read an interesting story. On verse 2 we can see the Shulamite sleeping, but her heart awake, which means that it watches. Galatians 5:17 says that flesh is against the spirit. The Shulamite’s flesh was sleeping, but something inside her, her spirit, was watching and was able to hear the Husband knocking on the door, “Open for me, my sister, my love” (Song. 5:2). The Lord is knocking on our door and our spirit can hear Him. However, the Shulamite’s reply was, “I have taken off my robe; How can I put it on again? I have washed my feet; How can I defile them?” (Song. 5:3). How many times do we give the Lord the same reply? We deny the Lord every time our spirit hears Him calling us and we reply something like, “Right now, Lord? I’m so tired, I’m exhausted… My body can’t handle anymore, I’ve just lain down. Come one, Lord, I can’t do it right now.” It’s just like the Shulamite who didn’t want to put on her robe or defile her feet. However, our Beloved insists, “My beloved put his hand By the latch of the door, And my heart yearned for him” (Song. 5:4). We may deny the Lord, but He insists. He has put His hand by the latch and touched our hearts. Sometimes He may use the saints, church meetings or circumstances in order to bring us back to Him. He’s putting His hand by the latch.
Young one, the Lord is calling you to you dine with Him, He’s calling you to rest. “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me” (Rev. 3:20). The Lord Himself is our rest and delight. “Will he delight himself in the Almighty? Will he always call on God?” (Job 27:10). He uses the saints, gentle cords, and He takes away our burden and stoops to feed us. “I drew them with gentle cords, With bands of love, And I was to them as those who take the yoke from their neck. I stooped and fed them” (Hosea 11:4). The Lord wants to give us life in abundance. “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).
This means that when we answer the Lord, letting Him in, we allow Him to be our rest. We can’t let the enemy usurp our time, goods, body and disposition. That we may be as “those who use this world as not misusing it. For the form of this world is passing away” (1 Cor. 7:31). That we may look for Christ who is our life (Col. 3:4).
“And those who use this world as not misusing it. For the form of this world is passing away” (1 Cor. 7:31)
Translation of the article Esperando o muito (Blog Eu vos escrevi)