"Be Strong . . . And Work"
By Lois J. Stucky (1928 – 2014)
The challenge that the Lord gave to the remnant of the children of Israel through Haggai rings down through the centuries to us, who might very well be the last generation of this age. A remnant had returned from captivity and they were rebuilding the Temple. The work was lagging. God spoke through Haggai to encourage the builders.
“...Be strong…be strong…be strong…and work: for I am with you, saith the Lord of hosts” (Hag. 2:4).
They had a noble task to perform – the rebuilding of God’s House. We, too, have a noble task – building the body of Christ, preparing for His Coming, gathering in the unsaved. We must be strong in the Lord and work also.
The work of rebuilding the Temple was lagging because the children of Israel were absorbed in their own houses and lands, in the cares and pleasures of this life. Is not this a great temptation in our day? It is easy to become overly involved in maintaining the standard of living we desire. Take care! Let us not neglect the things of God! Jesus said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God…and all these things [the necessities of life]shall be added unto you” (Matt. 6:33).
God is wanting to do a splendid work in this late hour. He has called us to be His co-workers. “...To every man his work...” (Mark 13:34). Let us find the tasks and duties God would have us to perform and be strong to do them. We can be encouraged by Philippians 2:13 – “...It is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.” What deeper joy can there be in life than knowing we are fulfilling the purpose for which God has called and chosen us! As we yield fully to Him, He will work His purposes through us.
Let us not succumb to the what-does-it-matter spirit or the I-can’t-do-anything spirit. Let us be strong to work, to sacrifice and to pray for revival and for the salvation of souls in this hour!
Might God enable us to see this day of opportunity in right perspective. Satan, of course, is busy distracting to matters of secondary importance. Let us be strong to work for God, remembering His precious Word – “for I am with thee.” What great incentive! What great reward!
And let us be strong to pray. “...The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (Jas. 5:16).