Though we think of Church primarily as a Sunday, large-group worship experience, we find in the Scriptures that we need to engage in small groups of Jesus-followers. Why? Because large group experiences are largely passive. But true spiritual growth happens when we serve those around us. This is why small group experiences foster a deeper, more profound dimension of growth. In the Church, circles are better than rows.
When we experience crushing tragedy, recovering seems impossible. Often, we build walls inside ourselves, keeping our hearts and souls safe - or so we think. Haggai shows us that in the wake of the Exile, God's people were doing the same. They were neglecting their relationship with God because it was too painful. But Haggai's challenge to them is the same as to us: if we stay behind our walls, we'll slowly die. We must embrace God once again, and when we do, we'll find not a God who is cold, uncaring and distant, but a God who suffers with us, who is working even now to redeem the world.