The Faithful (Malachi 1-4)

Written by Nina Schmidgall | August 21, 2010 | Malachi 1 - 4

I double-heart loved college.  I attended a gorgeous liberal arts Christian college in the beautiful beach town of Santa Barbara, California.  My classes challenged me, my professors engaged me, and I had a community of fun friends who were passionate about seeking and honoring the Lord. 

As students, we attended chapel three mornings a week.  My senior year, there is one particularly challenging chapel message on which I still reflect.  As the year ended, our chaplain was encouraging us in a life surrendered to the Lord and predicted a statistic that still echoes in my head.  Approximately 1300 students attend my college and the chaplain guessed there were probably about 900 of us in chapel that day.  He said, “Of the 900 of you sitting in this room, probably 50 of you will live lives fully surrendered to the Lord ten years from now.”  I remember this overwhelming feeling coming over me.  “Lord, let that number be wrong.  Either way, PLEASE let me be one of those 50!” 

This past May, I celebrated ten years since my college graduation.  In a few weeks, I will travel with my family back to Santa Barbara to celebrate homecoming with my classmates.  Additionally, this coming winter I will celebrate my 20-year birthday as a follower of Christ, having accepted him after being invited to youth group with a friend in seventh grade.  Both occasions remind me of that overwhelming desire to honor the Lord with everything I do. 

Malachi, the prophet, reminded God’s chosen nation of their disobedience and unfaithfulness.  The temple had been rebuilt and walls completed but when God’s enemies were not immediately destroyed, the people became impatient and apathetic. These chapters speak of rituals done without enthusiasm, impure sacrifices, favors for influential, marriage to those who worshiped idols. 

But Malachi also tells the story of the faithful few, the remnant, who loved and honored the Lord.  God treasures those faithful to Him.  “’They will be mine,” says the Lord Almighty, “in the day when I make up my treasured possessions.’” (Malachi 3:17)

Father, count me among the faithful.