Summary: This is the first message in a series from the book of Haggai. Often times we become so self-absorbed that we miss the very needs God has put before us.
Time to Rebuild
• The Jewish people had returned from Babylonian captivity in 538 B.C.
• Work on the temple had not taken place in over 15 years
On August 29 of the second year of King Darius’s reign, the Lord gave a message through the prophet Haggai to Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, governor of Judah, and to Jeshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest.  "This is what the Lord Almighty says: The people are saying, ’The time has not yet come to rebuild the Lord’s house—the Temple.’ "
Hearing God’s Voice
• The Lord chose His messenger
– Haggai was hand selected
• The Lord gave the message
– Clear and specific
• The temple was in disrepair and the people were not addressing the issue
• The first to hear
So the Lord sent this message through the prophet Haggai:  "Why are you living in luxurious houses while my house lies in ruins?  This is what the Lord Almighty says: Consider how things are going for you!  You have planted much but harvested little. You have food to eat, but not enough to fill you up. You have wine to drink, but not enough to satisfy your thirst. You have clothing to wear, but not enough to keep you warm. Your wages disappear as though you were putting them in pockets filled with holes!
An Issue of Priorities
• The people looked only after their own priorities
– Beautified their homes
– Allowed God’s house to lay in ruins
• Where is the time, talent and energy going
– Working hard, but accomplishing little
– The fruit of the labor was temporal
• It’s never enough
– God was not the focus
– Things could not fill His rightful place
"This is what the Lord Almighty says: Consider how things are going for you!  Now go up into the hills, bring down timber, and rebuild my house. Then I will take pleasure in it and be honored, says the Lord.
The Desire of His Heart
• The Lord has given each of us a purpose
– God honoring
• God is glorified when we live out our purpose
– Puts the priorities of God first
– Looks after His kingdom
– Utilizes our gifts talents and abilities
You hoped for rich harvests, but they were poor. And when you brought your harvest home, I blew it away. Why? Because my house lies in ruins, says the Lord Almighty, while you are all busy building your own fine houses.
Getting Your Attention
• It is easy to ignore what is important
– Self absorbed bubble living
– Over time we become oblivious to the obvious
• Those dreaded wake up calls
• God uses adversities to refocus our attention
That is why the heavens have withheld the dew and the earth has withheld its crops.  I have called for a drought on your fields and hills—a drought to wither the grain and grapes and olives and all your other crops, a drought to starve both you and your cattle and to ruin everything you have worked so hard to get."
Hitting Where it Hurts
• God affected the primary sources of industry and revenue for Jewish people