“O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like you in all of heaven and earth. You keep your covenant and show unfailing love to all who walk before you in wholehearted devotion.” (5:14a)
Amen to that. I love how Solomon gives praise to God after His holy presence fills the Temple.
“But will God really live on earth among people? Why, even the highest heavens cannot contain you. How much less this Temple I have built! Nevertheless, listen to my prayer and my plea, O Lord my God. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is making to you. May you watch over this Temple day and night, this place where you have said you would put your name. May you always hear the prayers I make toward this place. May you hear the humble and earnest requests from me and your people Israel when we pray toward this place. Yes, hear us from heaven where you live, and when you hear, forgive.” (7:18-21)
It is unimaginable when you think about it, God dwelling here on earth with us. It’s an easy thing to take for granted. Notice how Solomon asks for God hear him, to watch over the Temple and to answer his people. I read this and think, duh! It’s the Temple. Of course his presence will be there and he’ll watch over it. Luckily, Solomon takes a more humble approach.
My dad has always prayed over things. When our family got a new car, he prayed over it for safety. Before we left on a trip, we prayed. Recently he visited my new home and nervously eyeing our steep staircase, he asked if we had prayed over it yet. He invites God into things and petitions for his presence. It was always an example to me not to take for granted that God is with us, but to thank him and petition for it.
Do you have a big project on your hands? A new ministry emerging? A new job? A member of the family being added? Remember to dedicate it to the Lord. Invite him to watch over it and to hear from you. “Yes, hear us from heaven where you live, and when you hear, forgive.”
Let’s be people like Solomon, eager for God to be involved in our work with him.