“For when David had served God’s purpose in his own generation, he fell asleep, he was buried with his fathers, and his body decayed.” Acts 13:36
Our current sermon series is looking into the lives of great leaders that experienced change and caused change. David is one such leader. This passage about David is a profound and deep truth too few people ever realize in their own lifetime. It is the truth that I preached about last week by looking at the lives and Biblical truths from the life of Daniel.
Faithfulness is a necessary ingredient in our lives if we are to live lives that are so changed they are delicious with Christ. The flavor of faithfulness is, however, unique. The issue about faithfulness is that faithfulness will never taste the same way twice. It will never look the same in any two lives. Sure there will be commonalities. Two lives lived in faithful following of Christ will live in obedience to common commands, but they will live it out in different circumstances.
Each of us must learn to be faithful here and now. In our own generation and our own time. We must be like Daniel and be faithful where we are and when we are. Daniel would never have chosen to be the wise slave-servant leader for the kings of Babylon. Daniel would have chosen a life leading a free and independent Israel. But that was not his time and place. Daniel had to be faithful with his own here and now. David had to be found faithful in similar ways. He wanted to build the temple but he could not because God said not. Yet he was found faithful with his own here and now.
So must we. Each of us must learn to be faithful where we are, when we are, and as who we are. It says in Scripture that God “ordained the times and places for us.” Where are you right now in your life? That is where you are called to be faithful. If you are a student be faithful in study and in the classroom and in your social life as a student. If you are a career professional then be faithful in your professional ethics and to your job description and position. If you are a full-time mom then be faithful in your home and in the lives of your children. Each of these times (or stages) in life are valuable and important. So be found faithful there.
You can never be faithful with someone else’s talents, gifts, and abilities. Nor can you be faithful with their salary or their position in life. You have to faithful with what you have. Quit telling God you would do something for him if he would just allow it be . Tell God I will do exactly what you have gifted me and called me to do and I will find joy in that. Quit telling God you would tithe if you made the amount of money so and so makes. Quit telling God you would be faithful at your church if they would just do things this way or that way. Be faithful in your place and your position.
Some times in my role as pastor I have to deal with people who are unfaithful but like to think that they are faithful. Often these people have justified not living up to the truths of Scripture and feel very righteous in that disobedience. Some times these people feel it is their place to make decisions and influence things that are in no way form or fashion their calling or role in life or the church. Honestly these issues are just obvious results of an issue we all struggle with – selfishness.
Selfishness is that which robs us of faithfulness. We are not able to be faithful because we are too focused on what we want and not what others need and God desires. The difficult part of this issue is that we think we want to faithful with someone else’s life, money, or position, but in reality we know nothing about it.
That is why the flavor of faithfulness is unique. You can not be faithful with where you are not, with what you do not have, and with who you are not. You must be faithful here and now. So quit bribing God to give you what you need to be faithful because you already have everything you need. Quit trying to convince God that he needs to cause others to do things your way because they are most likely already being done His way. And be faithful here and now because in the end you too will fall asleep and your body will decay, but can it be said of you were faithful in your own generation?
Be faithful here wherever you’re here may be. And be faithful now.