Building What God Doesn’t Want to Build

June 1, 2009 - Mac Lake - Family, Vision

Sometimes my ambitions outpace God’s assignments.  I have dedicated my life to honoring and serving God, but as vision grows in my heart so grows the temptation to build what God is not asking me to build.  A spiritual leader must guard his ambitions and daily keep his ear tuned to God’s directives. 

There’s a little known character in the Bible named Hiel who made this mistake and he paid dearly for it.  His story is recorded in one verse, 1 Kings 16:34, “In Ahab’s time, Hiel of Bethel rebuilt Jericho. He laid its foundations at the cost of his firstborn son Abiram, and he set up its gates at the cost of his youngest son Segub, in accordance with the word of the LORD spoken by Joshua son of Nun.”

Years earlier in Joshua 6:26 God had warned the people of Israel not to rebuild the city of Jericho.  But evidently Hiel driven by his ambition ignored God’s instruction.  He had a vision and completed the job, but notice his family paid the price.   He lost his oldest son as he built the foundation.  But that didn’t stop him; he continued building and eventually lost his youngest son as he set up the gates.

Don’t let your ambitions outpace God’s assignments. When we build what God doesn’t want us to build it’s usually our family that pays the price.  It breaks my heart when I see a man (or woman) who truly loves God get caught up in selfish ambition, going way beyond what God is asking and watch the family pay the price.

Are you keeping your family a priority as you fulfill God’s assignment for your life?  What can you do for or with them this week to show them they are a priority in your schedule?

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Mac Lake


My passion is multiplying multipliers

5 responses to Building What God Doesn’t Want to Build

  1. Mac, this is a great post, and I think I have somehow missed the story of Hiel. Thanks for pointing out this verse and reminding me of this truth. I love the line “don’t let your ambitions outpace God’s assignments.” Good word.

    I was just sharing a story yesterday in my message about how God keeps reminding me how precious the time I have with my family is.

  2. Right priority in the home is of the utmost importance.

  3. Mac, it is amazing the longer i serve in the church, it is so easy to tell God His will for my life.

  4. Vimal (Chennai,India) June 1, 2009 at 10:35 pm

    Pastor Mac, this is very true. I am reminded of the story about Achan (Joshua 7:10 – 26).The family pays for every godless pursuit. There is no greater joy than being the right role model for your kids. They will always look upto to you…so definitely I agree that we got to be in tune with God’s directives.

  5. Powerful message and needed one for all Christians but especially for Church Leaders. We are prone to see God’s Blessing as a blank check to push past HIS direction in HIS name in our pursuit of success.

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