Read Ezra 5
Focus on verse 2
Sometimes all we need is a little encouragement, especially when we get stalled in a project that has become bigger than we first thought. I recall taking on a renovation project a few years ago. It involved electrical, HVAC, plumbing and about three hundred sheets of drywall. We contracted out the electrical, plumbing and HVAC, but decided to try hanging the drywall ourselves. After all, how hard can it be to hang a few sheets of drywall? In the weeks and months that followed I learned to appreciate the following people. The first on the list is the person who invented an ingeniously helpful device called a drywall lift. Second, are the people who graciously offered to help out from time to time, and finally those who just encouraged us to keep at it when it seemed like the project would never end.
At the end of yesterday’s reading the work on the temple was halted by political the wrangling of those who opposed the project. Today’s chapter begins with work resuming at the encouragement of Haggai and Zechariah who the text says, “prophesied to the Jews who were in Judah and Jerusalem, in the name of the God of Israel who was over them.” They had a message from God, which instructed the people to resume the project. Those who opposed them were still in opposition, and an appeal is made once again to the king, but the administration has transitioned. Darius the Mede is in charge now, in tomorrows reading we discover what it means when the text says in verse five “But the eye of their God was on the elders of the Jews.”