Beginnings are important because they often serve as a direction for the future. But endings are even more important. If you have a bad beginning, there is still hope that it can be changed. If you have a bad ending… well… that's really the end. The story of Uzziah is one that's sad because he had such a strong start. He walked in the way of the Lord, and because of his faithfulness to God, his leadership was blessed. That was until he sought to take the glory from God. Any time we try to steal God's glory we're opening ourselves up to pain and problems. In the case of Uzziah, he was stricken with leprosy and spent his final days in isolation. All of the good he did is forgotten as a result of his foolishness.
The life of faith truly is a marathon – it's not a sprint. Don't give up early because it's challenging. Keep fighting and keep running so that you can cross the finish line and look back at a life well lived. A few minutes of pleasure is never worth the cost of your reputation and your legacy. Live in such a way that one day people end your story with "happily ever after."