In God's Presence...
Have you ever heard anybody pray, "Lord, we invite you to join our presence," or something along those lines? I have and I have prayed it many times. However, I have been thinking about this statement since I taught a few weeks back on the presence of God and how we are considered a temple of the Holy Spirit.
In the Old Testament, the temple was a holy place. It was where the high priest would enter the presence of God within the 'holy of holies.' That room was so holy, that, if you were unclean entering it, you would not come out alive. I won't go into much detail about the temple to save time. Basically, the Temple was a Holy place; a place not to be defiled.
For the past few months, I am beginning to realize that we are called the "Temple of the Holy Spirit," meaning that God's presences resides within us. If Paul is truly comparing us to the Old Testament temple (which he is) then we are considered holy when we become followers of Christ.
I don't know why this seems like such a new thing to me, but for some reason, I really have begun to understand what it means to have the presence of God around me wherever I go. When I eat, his presence is there. When I pick my nose in rush hour, he is there. When I am sipping a cup of coffee and reading the paper, he is there. So, why is it that I fail to see him around me wherever I go - at all times of my day?
I have no longer been praying "God, grace us with your presence" because I feel like God feels ripped off when we pray that. I wonder if he's just sitting right beside us saying, "I'M RIGHT HERE, YOU BOZO!" So, I have begun to pray, "Father, open my eyes to see you wherever I go." Because I feel that God is always around us, it's just that we fail to see him because of our sin and selfishness.
So, then, if we are considered a temple of the Holy Spirit, meaning that God's presence is always with us and withIN us, why is it that I do all the stupid things in my life that I do? Why is it, that I reacted in an unloving way to a driver who is obeying the speed limit to a tee and I want to go 10 over? Why is it, that I laugh at jokes that are crude when I know that God's not laughing with me? Why is it, that I ignore a person who needs help and assistance because I am too busy and caught up in my own agenda?
If I... If WE truly realized that we are constantly in the presence of God, would we do those things we do? (DON'T sing that song! I know it's catchy, but don't sing it!... I made you sing it, didn't I?) Wouldn't our life be a life stamped with integrity? Wouldn't we live in the fear of God? (the healthy fear). Wouldn't we see people in a different perspective, through the eyes of Jesus?
Last week, during staff journalling, I called myself a "one issue prophet." Meaning that, there always seems to be one single issue that bothers me about myself and about my generation. That issue is compromise. (Compromise in a negative way) I'm seeing friend's break up marriages, I'm seeing friends make dumb choices in relationships because "it feels right." I'm seeing friends who were leaders in bible college fall away from God because they want to follow their sensuality and lusts. Isn't there enough of that in this world? Isn't there enough compromising, flakyness, non-committalness, two-faced, surfacy people in this world to make everybody sick? So, why become one of them?! After all, doesn't the word Holy come from the basis of the definition, "To set apart?"
It's time to set ourselves apart. It's time to claim the holiness of ourselves through Christ. To live and dwell in Sin is defiling the very thing that God sent his son to die to make holy. Do we really understand that? I don't know if we do.
So, from now on, I'm going to make my every morning prayer, "Lord, open my eyes to see your presence all around me, every day, every hour, every minute that I'm alive."
It's through prayers like these that can help us be "in-tune" with the spirit's promptings wherever we go so he can do radical things through us.
Peace out, mah brethren and sistren!