Daily D – 2 Chronicles 1:1
2 Chronicles 1:1 Solomon son of David established himself firmly over his kingdom, for the Lord his God was with him and made him exceedingly great.
Many of the best lessons in life are learned by looking back. Clear vision for the future is important. Earlier this morning, another prominent leader posted the leadership maxim declaring, “If your vision does not move people into complete dependence on God and immediate action, then your vision is too small.”
There is truth in this saying. There is also a complete lack of context when it stands alone. What God does next among a particular group of people in a particular time and place has a great deal to do with what has been going on beforehand with that group of people in that particular place at that particular time.
Before we move forward into what we consider a special future of God’s leading, we need to gain perspective on where we have been and what God has been doing up to this point. One of Tom Paterson’s favorite sayings was, “Perspective before planning.” (If you don’t know Tom, check out this link: [https://bit.ly/3N8Vhsh])
Before we launch into what we call a God-sized vision, let’s take a snapshot of where we are and what brought us here. This is as valuable for our personal lives as it is for churches, ministries, and businesses.
With 2 Chronicles 1:1, we see something vitally important. It is terribly easy to miss. It is the most important thing you will ever read about Solomon.
Solomon was a God-made man.
Solomon was extravagant. Reading 1 Kings and 1 Chronicles carefully provides a glimpse into a problem in the making. As wise as he was, Solomon was never content with what he had. He wanted more. Because of his wisdom and his ability to buy friends, horses, weapons, and wives, he demonstrated how he loved expansion. He always wanted more territory, more power, more grandiosity.
If Solomon had taken time to ponder how he had arrived at his particular station in life, he might have been more careful in making everything about him and his kingdom. The bigger they are, his father taught him, the harder they fall. This is true not only for the Goliaths in the land but also for kings with outsized egos.
Go back to 2 Chronicles 1:1 and reflect on the perspective Solomon at first acknowledged and seemingly forgot along the way. Here is the essence of the story: “the Lord his God was with him and made him exceedingly great.”
Again, Solomon was a God-made man, not a self-made man. As we read on about Solomon and his wisdom and his wealth, we see a man without the perspective necessary for becoming all God wanted him to be. Fortunate for us, we have the book of Ecclesiastes to provide us with a look back over what was squandered. The bottom line of the book is a wistful remembrance of a life lived in luxuriously missed purpose.
Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind.
For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.
Ecclesiastes 12:13-14 NIV
As much as Solomon had and did, he could have been so much more. He could have left a much better legacy. He could have blessed Israel and the whole world with all that God placed in his hands.
What is your vision today?
- What has God been doing in your life to bring you to this place at this time with your resources?
- What has God placed in your hands?
- What does this make possible when stewarded well under God’s leadership?
Never forget God has a plan for your life better than any you could devise for yourself. (See Ephesians 2:10.)
Greatness is measured not by what we have or what we know but by how we submit and manage these riches into becoming all God ever dreamed we would be. As great as Solomon was, he could have been even greater. His legacy could have been about so much more than wives, horses, wealth, and extravagance. It could have been about a kingdom exponentially greater than his own.
I will use what God has placed in my hands to become what God has always planned for me to be for his glory, and not for my own.
Our Father, I want to be more like Zinzendorf than Solomon. I want to preach the gospel, die, and be forgotten. I want everyone everywhere to know and experience you. I want to be a God-made man. I want to live a God-directed life. Everything you have placed in my hands is a tool to declare your grace, mercy, kindness, compassion, and love that never ends and never fails. Amen.
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Jonah 4:2, 3 So he complained to the Lord about it: “Didn’t I say before I left home that you would do this, Lord? That is why I ran away to Tarshish! I knew that you are a merciful and compassionate God, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. You are eager to turn back from destroying people. Just kill me now, Lord! I’d rather be dead than alive if what I predicted will not happen.”
Joel 2:12, 13 That is why the Lord says, “Turn to me now, while there is time. Give me your hearts. Come with fasting, weeping, and mourning. Don’t tear your clothing in your grief, but tear your hearts instead.” Return to the Lord your God, for he is merciful and compassionate, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love. He is eager to relent and not punish.”
Hosea 14:8, 9 “O Israel, stay away from idols! I am the one who answers your prayers and cares for you. I am like a tree that is always green; all your fruit comes from me.” Let those who are wise understand these things. Let those with discernment listen carefully. The paths of the Lord are true and right, and righteous people live by walking in them. But in those paths sinners stumble and fall.”