Purposing to Build

“Now Solomon purposed to build a temple for the name of the LORD. And Solomon sent word to Hiram the king of Tyre: ‘Behold, I am about to build a house for the name of the LORD my God and dedicate it to him for the burning of incense of sweet spices before him, and for the regular arrangement of the showbread, and for burnt offerings morning and evening, on the Sabbaths and the new moons and the appointed feasts of the LORD our God, as ordained forever for Israel. The house that I am to build will be great, for our God is greater than all gods. But who is able to build him a house, since heaven, even highest heaven, cannot contain him? Who am I to build a house for him, except as a place to make offerings before him? So now send me a man skilled to work in gold, silver, bronze, and iron, and in purple, crimson, and blue fabrics, trained also in engraving, to be with the skilled workers who are with me in Judah and Jerusalem, whom David my father provided. Send me also cedar, cypress, and algum timber from Lebanon, for I know that your servants know how to cut timber in Lebanon. And my servants will be with your servants, to prepare timber for me in abundance, for the house I am to build will be great and wonderful.'” 2 Chronicles 2:1,3-9

Solomon was one gifted, wise man, and as new regent could have made the kingdom all about him, but he started off well and purposed to build for the name of the LORD. He was consumed with a holy drive to construct the temple, prepared for by his father, for the ministries and glory of Israel’s God, and he kept this mission at the fore. He took pause to ponder this God’s greatness, as though reminding himself that every ingredient, every article, every building piece had a glorious purpose. His was a divine undertaking, and God’s name would be exalted. He was only God’s subject, His servant.

Uppsala Cathedral, Sweden

Is my purpose the same? What exactly am I building with how I spend my time? Are my efforts spent with holy ambition, an eye for God’s higher and broader glory than the temporal doings of man, of me? Are my prayers consumed with my agenda and wants, or with praise to High God, seeking His ways and exaltation, and surrender to Him? Do I plan my days and go about my tasks in humble service to my King, endeavoring to build His kingdom and make His name great and known? In my relationships and conversations, am I actively seeking to upbuild His body with truth, love, and encouragement? How am I adorning the temple of His Spirit, my own body–for the notice of others, or to reflect His goodness and joy? Do I choose to construct carefully and generously with what is costly and precious to me, or selfishly and haphazardly with lesser things and cheap effort? (Ephesians 4:11-16; 1 Corinthians 3:10-17; 14:3,12)

Father, I know all building is in vain unless You are at the helm and are the aim. In whatever position You place me, at whatever duty- at home, at work, in the church- remind me that You are the object of my efforts, Your greatness my motive, Your glory my mission. Then may I put hands and heart to the task, and work with all my might. (Psalm 127:1; Colossians 3:23)

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