When I was in the third grade, I figured that we were such good baseball players that we could beat the fourth grade.
So I convinced my classmates that we should play them. Then we talked to the fourth-grade boys who were happy to reply to our challenge (like a wolf looking at raw meat, they were). Then the teachers said we could play at recess and the lunch period.
Monday was the big day. I saw myself starring. Since it was my idea, I was going to pitch. I was also going to hit homeruns and make great plays in the field and the bigger boys were going to be embarrassed that the third grade beat them.
The games would last all week. That weekend I got sicker than a dog. I was still sick on Monday and couldn’t go to school, a bit better on Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday I went back to school and weak though I was, I was ready for battle.
Only the bad guys had beaten the life out of the third grade for three days running and only a handful were still interested in playing. “If I had been there it would have been different,” I convinced myself. But, it’s hard to see how even Josh Hamilton would have made much difference when you get beat by ten or fifteen runs.
Why in the world did I have to get sick and miss something that I had worked to put in place?
In life, we often work so that others can succeed. Many great “successes” are really a result of the combined forces behind that hard-working visionary which propel him to the top.
You ever hear of Solomon’s magnificent temple? Listen to this: ” David was thinking, ‘ My son Solomon is too young to plan ahead for this. But the sanctuary that is to be built for God has to be the greatest, the talk of all the nations; so I’ll get the construction materials together. ’ That’s why David prepared this huge stockpile of building materials before he died. Then he called in Solomon his son and commanded him to build a sanctuary for the God of Israel.
“David said to Solomon, ‘ I wanted in the worst way to build a sanctuary to honor my God. But God prevented me, saying, “You’ve killed too many people, fought too many wars. You are not the one to honor me by building a sanctuary—you’ve been responsible for too much killing, too much bloodshed. But you are going to have a son and he will be a quiet and peaceful man, and I will calm his enemies down on all sides. His very name will speak peace—that is, Solomon, which means Peace—and I’ll give peace and rest under his rule. He will be the one to build a sanctuary in my honor. He’ll be my royal adopted son and I’ll be his father; and I’ll make sure that the authority of his kingdom over Israel lasts forever.”
“So now, son, God be with you. God-speed as you build the sanctuary for your God, the job God has given you.” (1 Chronicles 22:5-11, The Message)
The vision for the Temple of God came from the Spirit through David. This king chose the place it was to stand (1 Chron. 22:1). He was incredibly generous in giving gold, silver and building materials for the Temple.
Then, “Here it is folks … Solomon’s Temple!”
Most of us only remember that God wouldn’t let David build the Temple because he was a man of war. But, the vision came from him! Much of the provision came from him. The order to Solomon to build it came from David.
And certainly, Solomon had the initiative, the creativity from God, and the generosity to see it through. But, it could have been called “David’s Temple” as well as “Solomon’s Temple.”
You know what? I think David could have cared less. His zeal was for the Lord God. He wanted a House to honor Him. Solomon’s Temple, David’s Temple? Big deal. It’s God’s Temple and they all worked together with thousands of unnamed others to see it rise from the ground.
Some of you think that you’ve accomplished nothing in life. What about your kids who are serving God? Or your pastor? He would be pitiful without your prayers. What about those who were saved? You didn’t preach the message when they came forward to give their life to Christ, but you prayed for them. Maybe it was even you who spoke to them about the Lord and invited them to church.
Who knows if it wasn’t your smile and friendliness to that visitor which gave them the courage to come back and eventually receive a touch from God?
I’ve been a minister for over 40 years now. You know how I came to the Lord? My grandmother and grandfather took me to church when my parents weren’t interested. Mamaw told me about the Lord and prayed with me. She was praying with me the day I gave my life to Jesus.
She prayed for her children and their spouses as well as her grandchildren. She saw God do some wonderful things in their lives.
If I said, “Do you know Bessie Deloney?” most of you would draw a blank. But, that woman had a tremendous influence for the Lord because she prayed for her family and won them to Jesus and her family has touched many others for the Lord.
So, before you say, “My life has been worthless,” hold up a minute. As you faithfully work for the Lord in little things, you may be planting some big seeds in lives. You may not get a temple named after you but the temple will get built and that’s what counts.
Have you ever had an experience like this when you did something behind the scenes that really worked well but no one knew it? Share it with us (briefly).
“It’s hard to be big when ‘little’s’ got you.” T.D. Jakes citing a friend.
“God promised men that good, obedient wives would be found in every corner of the earth. Then He made the earth round … and laughed and laughed and laughed.” (Internet)
It’s not exactly scriptural, but it is funny.