Editor’s Note: As you read the italicized text below, we encourage you to take a moment to pause and reflect personally on the questions posed by the author.
1 Chronicles 22:12-13
After years of battles, God gave King David rest from his enemies. During this period of peace, David built an exquisite palace for himself and reflected on his life and all God had done.
As a young shepherd boy, David never dreamed that God would use his life in a powerful way. His life dramatically changed the day God chose David to replace Saul as King. Despite Saul’s many attempts to kill him, David was patient, obedient, and respectful to Saul. God protected David and David sought peace by resting in God. David wrote numerous songs of prayer and praise. Before going into battle, he inquired of the Lord and God protected him. As with all men, David sinned. Some of his more widely known sins were his sin with Bathsheba and his command to take a census. God disciplined him through painful consequences and David repented. David recognized that God had protected, provided, comforted, disciplined, and blessed him. He wanted to build a house for God to dwell in. It was the least he could do for all that God had done for him.
How often do you stop and reflect on all God has done for you? Do you remain so busy that you are challenged to be still long enough to reflect on what God has done for you –Jesus, your family, your health, the success of your school …? Do you consider that THE creator, your provider, is your ever-present help in times of need? He is worthy of all honor, glory, and praise.
However, God told David he would not be the one to build the temple. He had shed too much blood, but his son Solomon would. Knowing his son was young and inexperienced, and recognizing the temple needed to be magnificent, he began preparations for Solomon. He met extensively with the Lord to develop the plans, he selected the contractors and secured the material so that Solomon would be successful.
David was probably disappointed in God’s plan, but he set aside his own agenda and followed God’s. How do you respond when you have a great plan, yet God directs a different one? Do you grumble or try to manipulate the situation so that you get your way or do you surrender your will to allow God’s will to be done?
As Solomon was about to be named King, David prayed over his son. In addition to asking the Lord to bless Solomon with success in building the temple, he prayed (emphasis added):
“May the LORD give you
discretion and understanding
puts you in command over Israel
you will keep the law of the Lord our God
you will have success
IF you are careful to observe the decrees and laws the Lord gave Moses for Israel.
Be strong and courageous
Do not be afraid or discouraged”
David’s prayer over Solomon is applicable to all leaders.
- He asks God for the blessings of discretion and understanding. As a leader you need God’s protection, wisdom, and insight.
- He acknowledges that God places leaders in command. God has placed you in your leadership role. He has blessed and allowed you to get your degree, gifts, talents and experiences which equip and enable you to be an excellent, highly qualified leader.
- God’s purpose in allowing leaders to lead is to keep His law. Knowing obedience to God’s law will be a struggle, David emphasized it twice in his prayer. The most important law you can keep is the command to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself. Are you filtering your leadership decisions through the lens of obeying God’s commands?
- God promises blessings when you obey Him. God has hand-picked you for your leadership role. Does knowing God has a plan for you, motivate you to be obedient to Him?
- David knows that leaders need to be encouraged to be strong and courageous, not to be afraid or discouraged. Is there an area in your leadership where you need to be encouraged and persevere?
Daily as you lead, may you remind yourself that God handpicked you for His purpose. His plans don’t always look like yours but when you submit to His directions, He establishes your steps. He desires that you lead out of obedience to his laws, the most important being to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul and mind and love your neighbor as your yourself. When you obey God, He blesses you. May the Lord bless you and keep you. May He make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. May He turn His face toward you and give you peace.