This is the day. It is HOPE Wednesday although we will not gather for our typical meeting this evening as I am having surgery on my knee. I want to thank you right now for the prayers, the texts, and the emails. Your love is flowing and is greatly appreciated.
Your love is flowing as God's love flows. And, that is the way it is supposed to be because you are the Body of Christ. You are God's people. You are God's children. And, you are God's temple.
There was a time when God would meet with His people in the temple.
2 Chronicles 7:16 reveals, "For now I have chosen and consecrated this house so that my name may be there forever; my eyes and my heart will be there for all time."
God spoke these words to King Solomon upon completion of the temple. It is not unlike the dedication of the church building as has occurred on successive occasions with improvements, additions, and completions at Zion Memorial.
But, the problem is that when we focus on the building, no matter how large, beautiful, ornate, or adorned, we lose sight of the fact that God did something incredibly miraculous through, with and for us in Jesus Christ.
You see, some people come to church like the Israelites came to the temple to meet with God. Here is the issue. When people only come to the church building to meet with God and then leave the church building, then they also tend to leave God behind too.
Basically, the church building is not where God resides. It is where God's people and God's children come to meet. But, the church itself is supposed to be God's people and God's children; therefore, the church is wherever God's people meet, inside the church building or elsewhere.
If you agree while reading this, please say "Amen" out loud.
If you are struggling with seeing the church as more than a building, 2 Corinthians 3:16-17 tells us, "Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy that person. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple."
Go ahead child of God. Hold your head a little higher. Stick your chest out. Nod your head up and down in agreement. Let that smile beam and glow in a way that lifts the mood and lightens the room you are in. Pop your collar if you must. Be proud of know who you are and whose you are.
Soak in the fact that you are God's temple because the promised Holy Spirit dwells inside of you because you are a believer in God through Jesus the Christ. Now, as God's temple, you have a blessed measure of protection and expectation.
In terms of protection, no one should treat you any kind of way, not because there are consequences from you. No, they should not treat you any kind of way because there are consequences from God. Destruction comes to those who seek to destroy God's temple. Therefore, you do not have to worry about getting even when someone comes against you in the midst of you having done nothing wrong. Do not forget that Romans 12:19 tells us of God's heart for His children and wrath against those who harm His children, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord."
But, before you run out attempting to live a life of no consequence because you are God's child and you are God's temple, do not forget that you are expected to be, supposed to be holy as God's temple is holy. The holy place is not somewhere that you go. The holy place is supposed to be wherever you are because the holiness of God is inside of you because God the Holy Spirit dwells inside of you.
So, there is an expectation and a responsibility that we have to God as we receive His covering, keeping, providing, and protection.
For as 1 Corinthians 6:19 says, "do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God, and that you are not your own?"
Beloved, because of God's covering, keeping, providing, and protecting, we are expected to live sanctified, separated for God, lives that show our faithful trust and belief in Him as our Heavenly Father, our Blessed Savior, and our Sovereign Lord.
We have a blessing that comes with accountability and responsibility.
I pray that these words will inspire you, encourage you, and motivate you to know that God loves you so much that He does not want you to come meet with Him. He wants you to know that He is always with you, in you, wherever you go. You are God's temple.
Let your life lived show the world the God who dwells inside of you.
And, remember, God loves you and I love you too!