When God Says “NO” (Part 1)

But that same night the word of the Lord came to Nathan, “Go and tell my servant David, ‘Thus says the Lord: Would you build me a house to dwell in? I have not lived in a house since the day I brought up the people of Israel from Egypt to this day, but I have been moving about in a tent for my dwelling. In all places where I have moved with all the people of Israel, did I speak a word with any of the judges of Israel, whom I commanded to shepherd my people Israel, saying, “Why have you not built me a house of cedar?”’ (2 Samuel 7:4-7 ESV). Have you ever reached a point in your life when you could sit down and breathe a sigh of relief and just relax? You’ve reached your goals, your dreams have been realized, and there’s not really anything “wrong” in your life. It’s an enviable position; and, it is one which is rare. There are those times that we get a glimpse of such peace. It’s usually when we reach those milestones in our lives. When you get your driver’s license; or, graduate from high school or college; perhaps it’s when you get married or have your first child; it may be that first job in your chosen career; maybe it’s retirement, that last day when there’s really nothing left for you to do but attend a party in your honor for the service you’ve provided and the recognition of a job well done. It is that wonderful moment when everything is going your way. This is where we find David today in our reading. These were possibly the best days in the life of King David.  He was the King of Israel.  His nation was united and at peace.  David was enjoying a time of rest, after all the problems that he had been forced to endure.  For David, these days gave him the luxury of reflection; and, he naturally turned to the many blessings of God. Out of this, a dream was born in his heart.  He wanted to build God a permanent dwelling place. Remember, since the time the Tabernacle had been built during the days of Moses, God’s presence had dwelt in the Holy of Holies of that temporary building.  David wanted to give the Lord a proper, permanent place to manifest His glorious presence. It’s a wonderful thing to dream of doing something to honor God. Often people come to this place in their lives and become bored and restless. Rather than using their stability as a base from which to do good, they focus on themselves in an effort to become more secure or find more pleasure. David wanted to use his time, resources, and knowledge to honor God. This is not a self-serving, sinful dream. David genuinely wants to do something for God. The only problem with this dream is that God said “No!” And this is where we can learn something essential in our lives. We will explore these essentials in the next few days. Today, remember God’s “no” is just another way of saying there’s something better planned for...

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