by Andre Lefebvre | May 22, 2011
“19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.” (1Cor 6:19-20)
Temples host worship. Exposed to everything we are exposed to, hearing everything we think and speak, with a mission to form us into the image of Christ, reminding us of His words, baptizing us with power unto witness, the sacred Holy Spirit of God indwells us…
Isn’t is amazing that we, who lived our lives for ourselves, who have since childhood made serious choices that have hardened our hearts for decades in order to survive pain and suffering, self-centered and rebellious to God in more ways than we could imagine, isn’t it amazing that we come to a point, one day, where we start being concerned about God’s approval and His displeasure, His grace and condemnation, guilt and forgiveness, etc. That is a gift from Him. Purely.
There is no way we “evolved” to that realization by the power of our intellect or virtue, rather, we have descended to the bottom of our human abilities for as long as we have held the reins of our lives and insisted we were victim, blind to our guilt before the God of the universe before Whom nothing is hidden.
But thank be to God for the day He called us to attention, giving us the grace to assess ourselves, our deeds and heart motives, in light of heaven’s eternal perfections. For the first time in our lives, we do not have to remain orphans, we do not have to continue being enslaved to sin, we are extended God’s hand through Christ to pull us out of darkness into His kingdom of Light and Holiness. We can be born again by dying with Christ and resurrecting in Christ. We become new creations, we’ve never been like we are and will be from now on. Exposed to the fire of Holy Love, we finally integrate the whole of Creation, shamelessly surrendered to the Sovereignty of God Who created us for Himself.
Being loved, letting ourselves be loved, we learn to love in return. We start longing for a new life, being saddened by our falling short, but remembering we were lost and still are, short of His grace, we can come back to a place of equilibrium and walk in the light we have received. It is a certainty that we do not change by our own power and will but we are BEING CHANGED through our pursuit of something new: holiness, reflecting our Father’s glory in the face of our Savior, through the indwelling of His Spirit. And through trials and sufferings, God keeps the focus of heaven clearly before us, strengthening our resolve to live for a kingdom “not of this world.”
From Him, through Him, for Him. Are we experiencing a thirst for His presence? Are we finally tired of our own ways and ready to allow Him to finally exercise His Lordship over our lives, step by step, not running ahead and again making our holiness resemble our own definition? Do we long for His life in us to take root, expand and break through the outgrown boundaries of our own self?
God called us from before the foundation of the world so we be a people for Him, redeemed, sanctified and glorified. He is looking for a harvest in us, much more than a harvest of numbers. A life consecrated, dedicated to Him is the proper response of a soul elected from eternity past to behold His glory and experience His embrace and not His judgment.
It is a clear sign of God’s work in us by His Spirit if we suffer the sadness of our own spiritual poverty. We ought to rejoice, although we groan and despair of ourselves. The despair that often grasp us at the realization of our own sinfulness is a clear sign of our understanding that we are called to be holy. Much more, we witness the pain we cause others, we repent of it yet we feel inadequate to love them as God loves us.
There is hope. The Holy Spirit of God living in us calls for the Groom to return to this world, His longing is louder than the longing of our flesh and His people join their voices to the cry. The enemy offers us control and self-determination, God offers us sacrifice and obedience, and we know the tree by its fruit: both the enemy and Christ embody the fruit of their discourse. Let us follow Christ with dedication, allowing Him to work in us His holiness. He made us righteous, he will make us holy. He took our death unto Him so we could take His life into us.
We do not know how to pray, even our prayer requests aren’t really to the point. We pray for things of this life, but if it is only in this life that we hope in Christ, Paul says we are the most miserable of men and women. Our prayers should echo the prayers of the Spirit in us, groaning beyond words, longing madly for us to be united to God by God, bringing with it perfect hope and answers: that God be glorified in everything.
When we face the narrow path of dedication to God’s purposes, we may have to back-paddle from some commitments, retreat from things we have decided were going to be part of our lives and submit them to the refining fire of God’s jealousy for the totality of our beings and lives. But as we do, His yoke will replace our burdens. As we submit our shoulders to the weight of His Lordship, we will start discerning through the mist of God’s mysteries, a Being Who is so much more, Who wants to accomplish so much more than just being the fullfiler of the sum of all our earthly needs.
We are dead without God. We are blind and wretched without Him. We are hopeless and without the destiny He has passionately and gleefully written for us before the foundation of the world. His plan for our lives is that we die to the adamic nature that helplessly pulls us away from God’s presence, and be risen to newness of life by His Spirit, sanctifying us, setting us apart to be a living sanctuary for His presence.
As we go about our lives today, may we meditate what it all means for us, our families and for our enemies and alalow His kingdom to come, His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven.
Grace and Peace,