I can hear a voice crying through the vista of time, ‘It may not come today, or it may not come tomorrow, but it is well that it is within thine heart, yes, it is well that you are trying. You may not see it; the dream may not be fulfilled, but it’s good that you have a desire to bring it into reality.’ Martin Luther King, Jr., who was the heart of the Civil Rights Movement when I was but a child, preached those words in March of 1968, one month before he would be assassinated. He spoke on the pain of Unfulfilled Dreams, reminding his congregation that sometimes we cannot complete a dream ourselves, but we can pave the way for others. Little did he know at the time that he would not live to see his dream completely satisfied. But he would indeed pave the way.
Nothing is as frustrating as having a good, godly goal, something special that you feel you can accomplish for God, and then witness that godly dream die. King David had such a deep relationship and devotion to his God that his natural reaction was the desire to lavish gifts upon the Lord of his life. He was convicted by the fact that he, as king of Israel, dwelt in a “house of cedar, but the ark of God dwelleth within curtains.” David was encouraged by the prophet Nathan to “Go, do all that is in thine heart to do,” build a house dedicated to God. But Nathan spoke out of turn, without consulting the will of God. Although it was a noble dream, God had another plan for David, and shut the door on David’s burning desire to build a temple. Instead, God would build David a house, “a kingdom…established for ever before thee; and a “throne” that would “be established for ever.”
How did David respond to the news that he would never see the fruition of his godly dream to build a temple? Did he pout and remove himself from the Lord’s service? No, instead David rehearsed with a humble spirit all the blessings that God had already bestowed upon him and upon his people: “For thou hast confirmed to thyself thy people Israel…,which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt.” And not only that, my Lord, but you have chosen and established me! He also rejoiced, “And let thy name be magnified forever,” and praised God that his house would be “established before thee,” FOREVER! David also rejected introspection and simply accepted God’s reasoning: I have “made great wars…shed much blood upon the earth,” but my son Solomon, in “peace and quietness…he shall build an house.” But best of all, David found the spiritual strength to redirect his energies and resolve to continue serving God. If he wasn’t going to be given the honor of building the house, he could pave the way, and pave he did! David would prepare all the building supplies to help his son accomplish that dream.
Sometimes God says no to good dreams and our job is to accept His will as we rehearse, rejoice, reject, redirect, and resolve.
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