“‘Yes, get to work! For I am with you.’ The God-of-the-Angel-Armies is speaking! ‘Put into action the word I covenanted with you when you left Egypt. I’m living and breathing among you right now. Don’t be timid. Don’t hold back.’” Haggai 2:4-5
I have a picture in my office, which serves to inspire me from time to time. It’s from 20 years ago, eating lunch with one of my heroes and mentors while on a trip to England. This was the first time we’d ever sat down together over a meal. I can still remember how nervous and excited I was. It was a bright sunny day and we walked several blocks, finally picking a pub where neither of us had been. There was the distinct smell of fish and chips, and beer on tap.
He was so at ease, asking me questions, nodding with understanding. I later discovered he had a serious hearing problem, which made me wonder if he was reading my lips or not hearing much of what I said…
He would listen for a while and then interject some simple and profound encouragement. At one point he winced, and I realized he had cracked off part of a tooth while eating his tomato bisque soup. Weird. He said “Aah, no big deal.” Thinking back he was amazingly gracious (and I was pretty oblivious). I can’t imagine my reaction: if one of my teeth broke off while listening to someone talk…
The message I always got from him was “It’s gonna be ok. God is at work. There’s nothing to worry about. You keep going for it and pay attention to what Jesus is doing…(and he would correct me when I veered off course)
Funny, it was the same message my dad gave me time and time again the last few years of his life. It’s the same message my wife has given me for over 30 years. And it’s the message I try to give my own sons, and to friends and family at SHV.
It’s good to have encouraging reminders!