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More Than Enough

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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They went to Moses and reported, “The people have given more than enough materials to complete the job the LORD has commanded us to do!”

Exodus 36:6

When it came time for the Israelite craftsmen to construct the Tabernacle, the people had the opportunity to contribute to the project. The Lord had not commanded that all people give their valuables, however. Rather, he had asked that those “whose hearts are moved” give their precious metals and other materials (Exod. 25:1-2). In chapter 35, the giving began, as people freely gave to what might be called the first capital campaign in the history of God’s people.

In Exodus 36, the building began. Under the leadership of the skilled craftsmen, Bezalel and Oholiab, the Tabernacle began to arise. But an unexpected complication arose. The people, who had given everything needed for the Tabernacle, continued to give generously. Such bounty exceeded the need to such an extent that some of the craftsmen left their work to tell Moses what was happening. He had to tell the Israelites to stop giving because they had enough (36:6).

This passage encourages me to pray today for the church. Together, we who are God’s people in Christ are building, not a literal tabernacle, but rather the church, the body of Christ. This effort, as described in Ephesians 4:15-16, requires the participation of each and every member. Yet reality falls short of this ideal. Most churches follow the so-called 80/20 Rule, in which 80% of the people are doing 20% of the work. How wonderful it would be if all of the people of God began to contribute to the building of the church of Jesus Christ, both through their efforts within the body and through their labors in the world.

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: Why, do you think, so many of God’s people today are not contributing their time, talent, and treasure to the building up of the body of Christ? How might we encourage one another in this crucial aspect of our high calling? In what ways are you building the church through your labors in the church and in the world?

PRAYER: Dear Lord, when I read this story from Exodus 36, I marvel at the eagerness of the Israelites to build the Tabernacle. They gave both freely and generously to this great work. What a joy!

As you know better than I, Lord, the building of your church depends upon the efforts of each and every believer. That’s how you set it up. This is your plan. Yet, in truth, we fall short of this design. We who are clergy can grasp “the ministry” as if it’s ours alone to do. The laity can feel excluded, or sometimes even happy to let the “professionals” do all the work. Forgive us all, Lord, for failing to accept the high calling of building your body.

Inspire your church, Lord, to be like the Israelites in Exodus 36. May it feel as if we have more than enough to do the work set before us. Then, Lord, expand our vision, so that we might reach out further into this world for the sake of your kingdom. Help each and every one of us to fulfill our calling both in church and in the world.

Finally, today I want to pray for my church. Specifically . . .

In the name of Jesus I pray, Amen.

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