The Joy of Restoration

It’s always difficult to lose something; especially when that item is important. I have lost things and I know how painful it can be especially when there is an emotional attachment. In Ezra chapter 3, the people were in an uncomfortable place. They wanted to rebuild the Temple, but they are apprehensive. 

They started off small, they built an altar and began offering burnt offerings unto the Lord. They didn’t just go and strike a match and drop it on the altar. No! They followed the instructions of Moses and offered burnt offerings at the appointed times. They had an altar but there was no foundation for the Temple. These people were so committed that they gave money, paid skilled workers, and brought supplies to begin the work. Verse 8 NLT says, “The construction of the Temple of God began in midspring, during the second year after they arrived in Jerusalem. The work force was made up of everyone who had returned from exile, including Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, Jeshua son of Jehozadak and his fellow priests, and all the Levites. The Levites who were twenty years old or older were put in charge of rebuilding the Lord’s Temple.”  

They did not wait until the project was complete to rejoice, no! When the foundation was completed, they stopped for a moment to give praise to God. The priests put on their robes and took up their trumpets; the Levites took up their cymbals. “With praise and thanks, they sang this song to the Lord: “He is so good! His faithful love for Israel endures forever!” Then all the people gave a great shout, praising the Lord because the foundation of the Lord’s Temple had been laid.”  (Verse 11). This was a joyous time. The elders wept but those who had never seen the Temple were shouting for joy. 

I can only imagine how they were feeling. They were born in exile and heard stories about the Temple. The Temple was more than a building, it represented the Lord’s presence with His people. They did not wait until the project was complete to give thanks. They found joy in the restoration. Wherever is happening in your life, take some time and rejoice.

Thought for Today: Friend, we can find joy in our painful experiences.

Have a blessed day and walk in faith and victory.

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