Passing the Torch.
“When David was an old man, he appointed his son Solomon to be king over Israel.” – 1 Chronicles 23:1 NLT
The older I get the more I find myself thinking about my legacy. What am I going to leave behind? What will people think about me when I’m gone? What will my children have to remember me by? They probably won’t be fighting over the family estate or the contents of my will. Vast sums of cash will not end up dividing my family. If anyone of my children are hoping to strike it rich when I pass on, they’re going to be sorely disappointed. But I do hope to leave them something. Like memories and knowledge that I loved them – if not perfectly, consistently. They will have my library of books, which will remind them that I loved to read and that, most of all, I loved to read books about our faith. They will have access to articles I have written and CDs containing messages I have given. These will remind them ofmy love for the Word and my passion for teaching it. They will know that I loved their mother passionately and completely – right up to the end. I hope they’ll recall my sense of humor. At least I thought I had a sense of humor. I tried to laugh at life and even at myself. But if there is one thing I want to leave my children, it is my love for the Lord. .
David had that same desire. He wanted Solomon to love and serve God. He knew that the key to Solomon’s success was going to be the health of his relationship with God, not the size of his army or the amount of gold in his treasury. So as David neared the end of his life, he did all he could do to help prepare Solomon for a future without him. And one of the things that was high on David’s list was the construction of the temple. This was about more than building a magnificent building. It was about building a dwelling place for God Himself. The temple would assure the presence of God in the midst of the people of Israel. It would be a permanent and constant reminder of their dependence on God as they worshiped and offered sacrifices to God. So David did all he could do to make sure the temple got built. He was not going to let Solomon forget about it or change his mind. David made all the right preparations so that Solomon’s job would be fairly easy. David did the heavy lifting, so Solomon could complete the task with relative ease.
That is what I hope I am doing. I want to set the foundation upon which my children and grandchildren will build their lives and their love for God. I want to spend the remaining years of my life doing the heavy lifting, so that my kids can have all that they need to enjoy a vibrant relationship with God all the days of their lives. In reading these two chapters of 1 Chronicles, we see David gathering, assigning, numbering, and preparing for a day he would not even be around to experience. Isn’t that what we should be doing – preparing for a day when we will no longer be around? That’s what a legacy is all about. It is leaving something of value behind that will be worth more than even if I was here. David’s contribution to the completion of the temple was inestimable. You couldn’t put a value on it. The time I spend now preparing building a spiritual legacy for my kids and grandkids is also beyond value. It is time well-spent. It will pay dividends for generations to come. David could have spent his remaining years wasting time on himself, enjoying life, taking advantage of the peace they were enjoying as a nation to travel, play golf, read, relax, take up a new hobby, etc. But he knew that the temple was going to be essential, because the temple was going to be the dwelling place of God – and God was the key to the future success of Solomon and the nation. So instead of relaxing, David planned and prepared. He was building a legacy.
Father, help me prepare for the future. Show me how to leave a legacy for future generations that will long outlast me. Keep me focused on the kingdom and not my own little world of comfort and convenience. Give us a parents a passion to prepare the way for our children and grandchildren. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men