In Old Testament times God’s blessings are centered in the unbreakable covenant he made with Abraham and his descendants, the Nation of Israel (Genesis 12.1-3). Israel’s part was to obey God (Exodus 19), but when they failed, God disciplined them by withdrawing physical blessings such as rain, or success in battle to get their attention and draw them back to him, and him alone.
This happens in Haggai when Israel fails to rebuild the Temple, the spiritual center of their worship. Through Haggai, God tells them, “Because of you the heavens have withheld their dew and the earth its crops” (Haggai 1.10). When they restart Temple construction, his blessings return.
In our time, if you’re born you’re automatically blessed with sun, air, and life. Accepting Jesus’ death for our sins gives us all God’s spiritual blessings including eternity. And the way we behave is also connected to God’s blessings. Wrong behavior can bring about a drought in your life, meant to lead you back to him, and him alone. (Pastor Manion gives a cautionary word in the video clip below.)
Today as you lift up your hands to God remember his word, “now this is what the LORD Almighty says: ‘Give careful thought to your ways’” (Haggai 1.5). Thank him for the blessing of life and salvation and consider how that should affect your faith and obedience.