1 Chronicles 29
Toward the end of King David’s amazing life, he recognized there was a significant and necessary task that hadn’t been finished yet, and couldn’t be finished in his lifetime.
David had a vision for God’s temple to be built—but he also knew he wasn’t the one who would get to build it. So, what do you do when you desperately want to see something happen, but your hands are tied from accomplishing it? You give someone else the resources to make it happen.
That’s exactly what David did. He said, “My son Solomon, the one whom God has chosen [to build the temple] is young and inexperienced. The task is great, because this palatial structure is not for man but for the Lord God. With all my resources I have provided for the temple of my God” (1 Chronicles 29:1-2).
And when he said “all,” he meant “ALL.” He would do everything in his power, including allocating his assets, providing detailed plans, and leveraging the labor force to make sure this temple was built for God’s glory (not David’s own glory), to be revealed among future generations (not his own generation).
This story often makes me consider what I’m passionate about that I won’t be able to finish on my own, or in my lifetime. Do I have a vision so compelling that I’ll set up the resources to make it happen, even if the fulfillment of that vision is something I won’t get to participate in or even see?
My great-great-grandfather, Frank C. Warren, was a pastor in Los Angeles in the early part of last century. He faithfully started three churches, and he built facilities to house those congregations. I’m sure he had dreams and visions for God to use those properties as tools to reach the region that has now grown beyond his imagination, and, while the historical record shows that some of those dreams were accomplished, I’m certain some of what was on his heart and prayed from his lips, never came to pass while he was alive.
Yet, because of his faithfulness to build and sacrifice and risk for the future, God is currently working in a generation that my great-great-grandfather never even saw (or perhaps, even considered). In fact, our upcoming extension site on Barrington Avenue, in West L.A., is one of the churches that was started by Frank C. Warren in the late 1920s, a fact I didn’t know until after we decided the Lord was calling us to take ownership of that property! I don’t think Frank could have imagined that his great-great-grandson would someday help extend his vision and be an answer to the prayers he prayed as a young man, but he left a resource for that very thing to take place.
What are you passionate about that you won’t be able to finish on your own and in your own lifetime? Are we willing to pray passionately, work faithfully, and give extravagantly, so God’s eternal purposes will continue to be accomplished after you and I are gone? As we prepare this autumn to communicate a building plan for our Van Nuys campus, and initiate new ministry in West Los Angeles, I want to challenge us to surrender, not only our resources, but also our preferences, so that rising and even future generations will experience the Glory of God in ways that we can only imagine.
Pastor Tim Clark