After the children of Israel returned from the Babylonian captivity they started to rebuild the temple. When some of the older men, who had seen the glory of the former temple, saw the foundation of the new temple they wept aloud – really loudly. The new temple was probably smaller and certainly far less splendid than Solomon’s temple. Yet, God sent encouragement to the builders by his prophets urging them to finish, and promising it was by his Spirit that the work would be done.
We, too, must take encouragement from the reality that it is only in God’s power that our work will be done. It’s probably not wise for us to remember too fondly the “glory days” of revival in Europe, especially if we are tempted to compare the present conditions to those of earlier spiritual renewals. After all, it was God who decided that he would send those great blessings. Who are we to question his providence for our days? Like Zerubbabel, we need to depend on God’s power and keep building.
Because spiritual movement here is often very slow, we must rejoice over every sign of God’s power. So, here’s some rejoicing! A friend of ours from another city has been a regular attendee at English camps for many years. A couple of years ago, he started to bring his son to camp with him; this boy was about ten when he first came. One day during his first year at camp he was deeply moved by a lesson which included the concept of the final judgment. He wanted some assurance that his father would be with him in heaven. Later we heard that this young one had been witnessing to others in his family, even in the face of rebuke and opposition. A few weeks ago this family came to one of our regular Sunday worship services. When the time came for the Lord’s Supper someone explained to the visiting family that participation in the Lord’s Supper is reserved for those who have faith in Jesus as their savior. This young man quickly said he would like to take it with us. We are rejoicing over the work of God’s Spirit in this young life!
· Please pray with us for wisdom and strength to engage in the work God has given us. Our pace of ministry has quickened this fall, with more Bible studies, discipleship meetings, evangelistic efforts, and the integration of new team members.
· Please give thanks with us that we see God at work, both in our local church and across the evangelical churches here.
· Please pray for our daughter as she has moved to Chicago for a new job.
Grace and peace to you all,
Johnny and Annette