They celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles with the required number of burnt offerings prescribed for each day. (Ezra 3:4)

THE CHURCH SHOWED THEIR LOVE to a young man and tried to give spiritual guidance. He attended church often, but his heart seemed divided. He was influenced by other young people outside the church and had an unhappy up-and-down life.

Yet the story changed when this young man had a new beginning. He married a Christian girl, went to a Bible college, and became a successful minister. The joy at his new beginning was apparent to those people around him.

God showed his love by directing the Jews into rites and ways of worship. Although as a nation they seemed to follow these guidelines, their hearts were divided. They were influenced by the other nations and God brought punishment through captivity in Babylon.

Like the young man, some Jews returned to their God, resulting in both celebration and worship. The Jews celebrated with the Feast of Tabernacles, a time to remember God’s guidance in the trip from Egypt. Their fatigue from the recent trip from Persia may have made that memory even more real. They worshiped as they dedicated themselves anew, represented by the burnt offerings.

Just as the Jews did, we should spend time remembering God’s goodness and let that lead us to dedicating our lives anew.

Turn to God and experience the joy of a new beginning.

Edwin Wiles is a retired science instructor from Kernersville Wesleyan and Surry Community Colleges. He enjoys his wife and family, reading, photography, gardening, and his church family.

© 2018 Wesleyan Publishing House. Reprinted from Light from the Word. Used by permission.