David left his son Solomon with much silver and gold, but true wealth came in his words, "And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought" (1Chronicles 28:9).
Once, when I was on a diet, I passed by Leatherby's Family Creamery, an ice cream parlor second to none. I succumbed to my favorite, a peanut butter and chocolate shake, ordered it and brought it home. Realizing I could not drink the shake and keep the diet, I put the shake in the freezer, got on my knees, and prayed, "God, keep me from drinking the shake." That is a double-minded prayer. If I didn't want the shake, it should be in the disposal, not the freezer. I drank the shake.
You cannot follow God and serve him wholeheartedly and be double-minded. When Solomon became king, God offered Solomon whatever he wanted, "In that night God appeared to Solomon, and said to him, 'Ask what I shall give you'" (2Chronicles 1:7). Solomon spurned riches and honor and asked for wisdom. Wealth and power would make him a mighty king, but wisdom would make him a good king, a godly king, a wholehearted king. God granted him wisdom and knowledge, and then gave him riches and possessions and honor, as well.
Why did God give him riches, too? Isn't that like keeping the milkshake in the freezer? No, it means that Leatherby's is still in town, and an ice cream shop is good for the town, it's just not good for my diet. The challenge for Solomon that would test and strengthen his wisdom was, would the riches and possessions and honor serve God and God's kingdom, or would they make the king fat.
Solomon would be a great king, but he would make mistakes. He would drink the world's riches of wealth and wine and women. At the end of his life, Solomon reflected, "He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity. The full stomach of the rich will not let him sleep" (Ecclesiastes 5:10, 12).
"The end of the matter is this," he wrote, "Fear God and keep his commandments. for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, with every secret thing, whether good or evil" (Ecclesiastes 12:13). It sounds like the good advice of his father, "And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought."
My God, my Lord, my Savior, I will serve and follow You fully, keeping my eyes on You, focused on the prize, a glorious day to come when I might hear the words, "Well done, good and faithful servant." You are what is good in life and I long to be godly. I will guard my heart against distractions. Strengthen my will and give me wisdom to choose well.
God, You are the center of my life, and all else revolves around You. You are first in everything. I trust my life to You, knowing that my life will only be great when it is first good and godly.