I was doing my Bible reading the other day, and was going through I Kings, no big deal. I mean, these are stories I teach my second graders every year, so I've studied them before. However, almost every time I read through this section, I discover something new. Do you do that? I used to not believe people when they said they always found something new every time they read the Bible, but I'm seeing it more and more as I read through it each year.
That being said, here's what I noticed this time.
We're always talking about Solomon's early years of being a king as though they're amazing and perfect. And, in some ways, they are. After all, he takes care of the last of his father's enemies. He asks for wisdom from God instead of wealth or power or something else. And he builds the temple that David wanted to build but couldn't. Those are awesome things.
But this time, I noticed something else as I read through the part about him having the temple built. At the end of I Kings 6, it says it took him seven years to build the temple for God.
Then, you go straight into chapter 7, and the very first verse says "Solomon was building his own house thirteen years."
Hmm. It took him seven years to build a house for God, but thirteen to build his own? All this time, I'd thought his problems didn't start until after he married all of his hundreds of wives, but now I'm thinking he may have had his priorities wrong earlier than that. After all, who is more important? God or Solomon?
See what I mean? It blows my mind to find all these people in the Bible spouted as being practically perfect, but who were so far from it. It makes me feel a little better about myself. But, I also hope it makes me learn from their lives, too. I don't want my priorities such that I spend almost twice as much time doing something for myself as I would doing something for God. But I probably do anyway. After all, I give him at least half an hour of Bible reading and maybe half an hour to an hour of prayer. But how many hours does that leave doing things that make me happy?
How about you? Is this something you struggle with? Any ideas on how to learn from Solomon's mistakes and make sure that we're not headed down the same road? I'd love to hear your thoughts.
This is a place for me to share thoughts and ideas not just related to writing. Thoughts about what's going on in my life, about an idea I got that I thought shareworthy, or just a funny anecdote.