2 Chronicles 2:5
And the house which I build is great: for great is our God above all gods.
If someone asked for our most prized possessions, would we willingly give them away? If we’d accumulated a stockpile of wealth and someone told us that there was someone who deserved it more than us, would we give it to them? All the materials and riches that went into the temple were practically immeasurable, not to mention all the time, effort, and talent that it took to do the actual construction. And what was the point of this grand display of wealth and beauty? What was the point of spending so much money, as it were, on this one building on a mountain in Jerusalem?
For one thing, we serve a great God, and He deserves the best we can offer. It’s not that we try to buy His favor by giving Him our wealth, but the people brought gifts for the purpose of building the temple out of thankfulness to God and out of recognition of His supreme authority above them. They sought to honor God by bringing to Him the best they had to give, the things they valued most, to show that they valued God more, loved Him more, wanted Him more than gold and silver and precious stones. And they realized it was He who had blessed them with those things in the first place. It was He who had delivered them and enriched them through victory over their enemies.
We, too, should give our best to God. It’s not because we think the more we do or the better we do, the more favor we’ll have with Him and the more we will get out of Him, but it’s simply from grateful hearts hollowed out by His love that we seek to show our gratitude any way we can. It’s because we know He is worthy, because there is none greater than our God, none higher, none wiser, none stronger, none other who deserves our praise and worship and service. And we realize that all we have comes from Him anyway, and there’s no point in hoarding it all for ourselves when we can use it to honor and glorify Him.
We truly serve a great God. But are we holding something back from Him? Are we spending our time, our talents and abilities, our resources in ways that will honor Him? Have we given our best to Him, what we value most? God doesn’t need any of the things we can give to Him. After all, it’s all His anyway. But when we willingly give Him our best, it shows Him that we’ve given Him the highest place in our hearts and that nothing in our lives comes before Him.