“But the Lord said to David my father, ‘Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart’ ” (1 Kings 8:18, ESV).
I am convinced that every single youth pastor wants to make an unbelievably huge impact for the kingdom of God. If you are a youth pastor and reading this and you don’t want to make a huge impact, then you should probably quit. It’s that passion inside of us to put a dent in eternity and to leave an everlasting impact for Jesus that drives us. But what if the plans that you have are only the foundation of the greater things that God is going to do?
First Kings 8:18 is part of Solomon’s prayer of dedication after he had finished building the temple that his father, David, wanted to build for God. As I read it this thought came to my mind: What if the work that I’m doing is only the foundation of greater things that what God will do through someone else later?
David had it on his heart to build the temple for God. However, God told him that he would not be allowed to build the temple for his hands were dirty with the blood of warfare. God told David that his son, Solomon, would be the one to build the temple to God. And yet we see in the verse above that David had it in his heart to build God a house. David wanted to leave a “lasting kingdom impact” for all to see. He wanted to do this because God was worthy of it. He wanted to do something huge for God, but God said no. The work that David wanted to accomplish for God had already been assigned to someone who would come up after David, but the fact that David had it on his heart to do this huge thing for God pleased God.
I have a huge desire for God to use me to build the most explosive young adult ministry in Southern California. The goal is huge. The team that he has already brought together is unbelievable. The vision that he has placed on my heart is as big as he is, which causes me to never be satisfied with the size of our ministry but to always go after more people who do not know Jesus. I want to see a next generation ministry that exalts Jesus, embraces a lifestyle of worship, constantly sees people surrender to Jesus and be baptized as followers of Christ, and answers the call to mission that each follower of Jesus receives. But that morning, when I read 1 Kings 8:18, I felt like God asked me this question: “Are you okay if your whole job is to build the foundation while someone else comes along and sees your dream become a reality?”
That’s a tough question when all you’ve ever thought was that you would be the one that God used to change the thousands in your lifetime. But the reality is that it is all about Jesus, his timing, and his will being fulfilled. I live in a linear, time-bound existence. I know what has happened and I live in the present, but only God knows the future. But to God, all of time is seen at one moment, and therefore his will is being accomplished perfectly at the proper time.
So my heart is to serve Christ with everything that I have, whether that be laying the foundation for greater things yet to come, or to be the one to see the climax of all of the efforts of the saints throughout the years. Either way, the work still dents eternity. I will serve Christ as if the greatest work of God is about to happen in and through me. And the fact that it is on my heart to do something incredible for Jesus makes God happy. The results are up to him.
To God be the glory.