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Posts Tagged ‘temple’

I have been pondering God’s presence within me. In her book He and I, Gabrielle Bossis relayed these words from Jesus to her: “Perhaps I created you only to console Me and to give Me a refuge in your heart where you sing Me the hymn of love. Why shouldn’t I have a home on earth? Must I still have no stone on which to rest my head?”

The first part filled my heart; the second made it ache. I find myself deeply desiring to console Him.

What space do I give Him interiorly? Of what quality is it? Is it a place of rest for Him, a protective and healing refuge?

Psalm 132 relates David’s desire is to build a house for the LORD:

I will not enter the house where I dwell, nor go to bed where I rest;
I will give no sleep to my eyes, to my eyelids I will give no slumber,
till I find a place for the LORD, a dwelling for the Strong One of Jacob.

David was thinking of building a temple. I am thinking of a spiritual temple: Where does the LORD dwell? In our hearts. So how do I go about building a dwelling place for the LORD?

That is a huge question and there are a myriad of tangents to consider. However, one lesson I’ve been learning over the years is the balance of “boldly approaching the throne of Grace” to bring our needs before God, vs. using God as a sort of Santa Claus with our own expectations of how He ought to respond.

In a reflection on the gospel story of Jesus cleansing the temple, Meister Eckhart addressed this very thing. He wrote: “As long as we look for some kind of pay for what we do, as long as we want to get something from God in some kind of exchange, we are like the merchants. If you want to be rid of the commercial spirit, then by all means do all you can in the way of good works, but do so solely for the praise of God … Expect and ask nothing in return. Then the merchant inside you will be driven out of the temple God has made …

“…observe that when all was cleared, there was nobody left but Jesus. And when he is alone he is able to speak in the temple of the soul.”

My soul.

A clean heart create for me, God;
renew within me a steadfast spirit.
(Psalm 51:12)

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Driving in this morning I realized I was annoyed with someone else and was running an argument through my mind – an argument I will never voice out loud, but that I was allowing to play out in my thoughts.

The moment I realized this I blurted out loud, “Lord, why would you want to dwell in THERE?!!”

God has done a lot of work within me, helping me to let go of anger and frustration and to grow a deep-seated peace in my soul. But I know there is more work to be done as He continues His good work in me and helps me to grow in holiness, and my thoughts are something He is working on with me.

I have been longing for and praying for a deeper relationship with God; an intimacy like Moses shared with Him, face-to-face. I desire to grow in spiritual maturity and to know Him more.

So if my body is a temple (1 Cor 3:16 and 1 Cor 6:19) and the Holy Spirit dwells within me, it makes sense that I need to continue “cleaning out” the temple, making it a holy place where God will dwell more fully.

I am smiling – I knew what I desired, I just wasn’t sure how to get there. But wouldn’t you know? God is showing me, guiding me, teaching me.

Abba Father, please take captive my mind! Help me to keep it on things above, that which is beautiful and holy and You. Help me to stop wallowing in a place of judging others, accusing … even if it is only in my mind. I want my mind to be a holy temple dedicated to You! I don’t have the power to make it so but You do! Please continue to help me, guide me, teach me!

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