The man who forsook the heart of God.


National Gallery of Art (NGA Image, Public Domain)

“The fear of the LORD is a life giving fountain, it offers escape for the snares of death” (Proverbs 14:27, NLT).

     The wisest king in the Bible missed the point.  Solomon was able to write chapters of wise thoughts.  Solomon was able to reflect philosophically on the many perspectives of life and he was able to reduce the complexities of relationships, priorities and values into wise reflections and directives of how to live a joyful and blessed life as a person who feared God.  Solomon was able to offer strong rebukes and warnings about falling into the traps and snares of sin. Yet, Solomon who was the wisest and richest King of Israel, missed the point of many of his own writings.

Solomon missed the point of life even though he was very wise about life. Solomon knew more about life than almost anyone. Solomon wrote more about life than anyone in the Old Testament other than the major Prophets, Moses and his father David. Solomon built more buildings, palaces and temples than any other king of Israel. Solomon had more money and gold than the other kings of Israel. Solomon owned more chariots and horses than the other kings of Israel but Solomon fails to let his heart be satisfied with his God.

Solomon in the very height of reign begins an endless, futile and insatiable quest for more riches, palaces and wives.  Solomon’s coveting, greed, pride and inability to find satisfaction in the accumulation and possession of more and more, led him to seek more and more.  In the end, Solomon’s more wives and possessions would leave him distant from having purpose in life and all of his more brings judgement upon him, from the God who had previously blessed him richly. All of Solomon’s  vast accumulations of more became pointless and vanity.  All of Solomon’s wives, palaces and riches were of little value because he had lost his heart for God.

Solomon has been since been labeled as  “The Wisest Fool” and “The Brilliant Failure.” While Solomon wrote brilliantly and profoundly about the folly of sin and the destruction, it would bring;  he misses the point of applying it to his own life. Even though Solomon writes “the love of pleasure will bring poverty,” he fails to see how poor he has become in his love for all pleasures of life.  He fails to realize he has turned away from the “pursuit of righteousness and loyalty” which would bring “life, righteousness and honor” (Proverbs 13:25) and finds his life void of righteousness even though it’s full of extravagant luxuries.  Solomon fails to see how much of the blessing of God, he has lost in the loving of his countless wives.  Actually all of Solomon’s wives, accomplishments, palaces, massive amounts of gold, horses and chariots could not satisfy him because his heart was far from his God.  All of the things of life, had taken him away from his God.  Finally, even though Solomon sees the fear of God as leading to life (Proverbs 19:23), he sets aside the life that the fear of God would bring.  Solomon’s life ends quite sadly because midst all that he had around him, he had lost the only thing that mattered.  Solomon had forsook the wise pathways of God’s ways that he knew and had written about because his heart was consumed by other things.  In the end, he had no room in his heart for God. All his things had taken the place of God in his life.  In the end, Solomon had lost what mattered most … midst the staggering abundance, shimmering riches and his many beautiful wives and their gods.  It was a sad end for such brilliant man of promise and blessing. Solomon’s life leaves a legacy as profound as any of his Proverbs. We need to be acutely aware of anything that would take our hearts away from our relationship with the Living God. The Apostle John at the end of his life, leaves us this simple truth, “Dear Children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your hearts” (1 John 5:21, NLT).

Suggested Reading … Proverbs 14

The Psalm 130 Prayer

Dear Lord … I am in the bleakest of moments and my very soul is in anguish. I am crying out to you, Almighty God. Oh Lord, you are my Lord. From the deepness of my heart, I cry out for you. Listen again to your aching child and cover me with your mercy.

If you would ever remember my sins, I would be hopeless to even stand in this place, to ever come before You. Yet, I know of your infinite love and forgiveness and I honor You above all else, for You alone are God.

I wait for you, oh Lord. I sense You, as I wait for You. I know of You, for I know You. All my hopes rest upon Your promises. I wait in Your care. I eagerly wait as I yearn for You. I know You will come to me. Yes, I eagerly wait. I wait knowing you always come to as surely as the sun will come to the morning.

All who know of You, O Lord; hope in You. We know of your love, O Lord. It is steadfast upon us and we cannot lose your attention. We trust in You. With you, O Lord there is endless grace to redeem us and You alone, redeem the world from all sin. Thank you, O Lord, Thank you. Amen

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord!
O Lord, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
to the voice of my pleas for mercy!

If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities,
O Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness,
that you may be feared.

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen for the morning,
more than watchmen for the morning.

O Israel, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
and with him is plentiful redemption.
And he will redeem Israel
from all his iniquities.
Psalm 130 English Standard Version

Hope carries us until the promise comes …


“And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also, knowing that tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope; and hope maketh not ashamed, because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost who is given unto us” (Romans 5:5-8, KJ21).

     In the spring, the simplest of plant life are the first to exhibit expectant life as their cell structure begins to change color and grow. The mosses and the lichens began to tinge with the slightest changes in hues from dormancy to nourishment to growth. What has been, releases its hold unto what will become. Life lying dormant under the bitter and cold comes forth as the promise of life anew.

    Our living through the bitter and the cold, dormant under the force of the brutal endures as it patiently waits for the promise of living again. This is where faith gathers strength through hope for the future. What comes against faith is endured because as what faith have nourished and sustained in the past is remembered. What is remembered is the experience of the capacity of faith and hope begins to overtake the past.

    As a new season beckons to come to us, hope which has carried us, holding out the promise of something new begins to show its promise is true. The color of life goes from the lifeless to the subtle hues of life. In the simplest of ways with the tinges of color, hope shows us the promise of faith is true because life has come again.

    All of life is a gift in grace of our Heavenly Father and when hope blossoms in the spring after the harshness of pain and difficulty, we can smile with the assurance that our Precious Savior is bringing life anew as all promises will be fulfilled. Our hope rests not in false promises but in the glory of God and He is always steadfast and faithful in His love. Our hope in God is something we can always find joy in.

“Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God” (Romans 5:1-2, KJ21).

Suggested Reading … Romans 5


Not a thing you do but a place you go.


“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10, ESV)

      Amidst the compartments of time, work, priorities, intentions, passions, humor, interests and activities that fill up our days, can we find extra time to do another thing? Amidst our collections of mementos, odd little items of paper and poems with numerous souvenirs stacked up or boxed away, how many more things will we do that will yield more assortment of the things we did, now remembered. Are we what we do? Do our lives add up to what we have done or who we are in the things we do?

      Where along the journey of our days upon the earth, which will ultimately be recorded in the memories of others, do we find and refine the core of who we are? It is easy to do things we love that are of little substance and easy to get caught up in the swirl of activities running the spectrum between work and relationships. It also difficult to refrain from doing things we feel are obligations and commitments.
In this busyness of doing, we add more and more doing. Even in our faith, we can have a tendency to make this vital basis for our living, a thing we do. Faith, which we may claim as central to our living thus joins the countless other items on the shelves bending with the weight of all the things we do and call our living.

       God calls us to relationship. It is a redeemed relationship. He is not thing we do among all the other things we do. He is Father we go to for all peace, need, comfort and grace. A Living Son who walks alongside of us in all of our days with hope, redemption and restoration and a constant, consistent and empowering Counselor for every moment along the way. He dwells from a place of love as we go Him in prayer. He waits from a place of grace we carve out when we are still before Him and desire His will. He gives from a place of benevolence when we come to Him in need. He heals from a place of mighty strength as we trust and obey. He teaches from a place of truth when we go to Him for wisdom.

       Our faith is not a thing we do but a place we go to find, wait and dwell in our Heavenly Father’s love. Before Jesus Christ could ever do a single thing, He went and spent time in the presence of His Father in communing prayer and in the midst the vast demands of His ministry, He walked away to go to a place where His Father waited for Him. Before all things and in the midst of all things, our Living God and the relationship we have with Him, must be the place we go for all things.

“Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went to a solitary place , where he prayed” (Mark 1:35, NIV).

Suggested Reading … Mark 1