“And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind…” (1 Chron.28:9)
David’s parting words to his son, Solomon, give you and I the proper order for our walk of faith, as well. One of the most important skills in life is a proper sense of priorities. When we do the right things in the right order, we get the right results.
First, says David, we must know God; then we should serve Him with a perfect heart and a willing mind. When we reverse the order, we soon become spiritual “professionals.” A true knowledge of God, in all His glory, power, and love, cannot help but culminate in some type of service for Him. On the other hand, service can easily become an end in itself, leaving precious little time to nurture a deep, constant, and abiding relationship with God. It's the difference between keeping house for a living and keeping house for someone you love with all your heart.
David even gave his son instruction on how to serve God. It involves two things, he says: the heart and the mind. Preparation and performance of any service for God is dependent on a perfect heart and a willing mind. Don’t swap the adjectives. The mind doesn't have to be perfect (thank God!), just willing. A willing mind can be sharpened. But a so-called "great mind" can be useless to God or man, if the individual is unwilling to be disciplined by godly precepts.
Ah, but the heart is in constant need of perfecting. King Amaziah could boast that he did the right things; but God said he did them with an imperfect heart (2 Chron.25:2). Serving God half-heartedly comes from having only a nominal knowledge of Him and, therefore, only a lukewarm love for Him. Do you see why knowing God must precede serving Him?
Get it right: know God, then serve Him. Know Him intimately, through daily, personal contact and Bible study; then give Him a willing mind and a perfect heart, and see what wonders He can do!
"For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him" (2 Chronicles 16:9)