Day 1 of 3 • This day’s reading
“The beginning is the most important part of the work” - Plato
After coming out of an 80-year Babylonian exile and having the glorious temple that King Solomon built be reduced to rubble, it was now time for God’s people to rebuild a new temple where Yahweh would reside and be worshiped.
To the younger generation, this was a huge milestone. But to the “old-timers” who saw or heard firsthand stories about the glory & splendor of the previous temple, this latest edition paled in comparison. You can almost hear the chatter among the seasoned veterans, “I miss the good-ole days” or “They just don’t make em like they used to.” “You call THAT a temple?”
God had a message for Zechariah to pass along to both young and old alike…
“Do not despise these small beginnings, for the LORD rejoices to see the work begin, to see the plumb line in Zerubbabel’s hand.” (Zech. 4:10a NLT)
Sure, this latest temple 2.0 seemed modest compared to the previous version but God still wanted them to celebrate the fact that construction had begun. Progress was now being made. A hopeful momentum was now set in motion.
Whether it’s rebuilding a temple or writing a book, we can rejoice with the Lord to see the work begin. We can also rejoice in knowing that the same God who resided in a temple made of stones now resides in these bodies of ours (1 Corinthians 6:19) thanks to the sacrifice of Jesus.
Zechariah is an invitation for us to surrender our expectations of what our books have to look like and the process that we go through to finish them. It’s also moving on from the “good ole days” and looking forward to what the Lord has ahead.
We hear all kinds of naysayers both inside and outside our heads: “Who are YOU to be writing a book?”, “My writing isn’t as good as so and so...maybe I should quit this writing thing.”, “This is simply too overwhelming for me to finish.”
One of the worst lies we can believe is that what we’re writing is insignificant and will not matter in the end. We reject that lie in Jesus’ name. It DOES matter!
Our books and writings may not look like much to us at times, but it’s still hallowed ground that we’ve set aside to bring glory to the Lord.
With the help of God, each of us can watch the momentum build with our small beginnings!