Read Ezra 3:10-14
Christ is the foundation of the Church and yet rarely do we praise Him with enthusiasm. Sure, we sing the chorus’ with the rest of the congregation but it’s the rare few who interrupt that choreographed reverie with triumphant, insistent and intense shouts of “Hallelujah!” When the temple was being rebuilt in Ezra’s time, there were mixed emotions. There was thrill over restoration and sorrow over its necessity. Sadly there appears to be little of either in modern day “religious” people. Sure, they’re in attendance and may clap, sing, bow heads at appropriate times but where’s the real fervency of the Spirit? How can we stand so idle and callous amidst revival and wrath? And believe me, they both exist today and yet very few are shouting or weeping.
I read about eleven missionaries beheaded in Syria. One of them was my son’s age, 12. Part of me reveled in the fact that young man was firm enough in his faith to refuse to deny his Savior though it meant he’d lose his life. However, the other part of me was truly appalled by my own nonchalant, tear-free reading of the account. These are my Spiritual siblings sacrificed in my/our Savior’s Name and I neither rejoiced over the lives that would be touched by their martyrdom, nor wept over the conditions with which they’d been subjected. The women were raped in public while they prayed. I don’t want to be desensitized. I want to feel the extremity of praise and sorrow in the midst of this fallen world so that He will be glorified in me as He was in my Spiritual siblings.
Father, take us to task for our callousness. Break our hearts for what breaks Yours that we might also rejoice over the things that delight You. Help us rebuild Your temple, Your Church. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.