His heart was not fully devoted to the Lord.
—1 Kings 11:4
“They can’t finish!” is a frequent beef when a sports team is on a losing streak. They start strong, but sputter to a dismal finish.
Churches usually start strong, defined by love, unity, and purpose. Over time, attitudes sometimes change, division intrudes, and they become a shadow of what they were. Strong start. Weak finish.
We’ve all seen individuals start strong, show unusual promise, but fail to live up to expectations. Great start. Disappointing finish.
Solomon started strong. His request for wisdom pleased God (see 1 Kings 3:5-14). And he built a magnificent Temple to God’s glory. How sad to see his fatal stumble in old age—he married foreign women, which God had forbidden, and they “turned his heart after other gods, and his heart was not fully devoted to the Lord …”
Above all, finish well.