What can I say? I love to run. I've run 4 full marathons and 6 halfs. But I love God more and I'm determined to run this race of life for Him to receive the ultimate prize of Heaven. I'd like to share my thoughts with you. You can agree or disagree. Comment or don't. You can read or not read. But it's here if you want it. Enjoy! .
Monday, August 29, 2011
We're Building Up the Temple
Had a great weekend with family and friends. Ultimate Frisbee Friday afternoon with my CC team (always great). Sounds baseball game Friday night with friends which included an awesome Michael Jackson medley fireworks show and running the bases (the kids - not me). Faan (Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network) walk and events at Centennial Park on Saturday morning (great cause and a lot of fun) . Hilarious skit practice with six 4th grade boys for the upcoming talent show (so funny!) Fantasy Football draft party with Carter and his 4th grade football team (watching the boys get into the live draft was great). Titans game Sat. night with friends. 2 great worship services with brothers and sisters Sunday including an amazing song service of praise Sunday night. It was a busy weekend but full of fun activities and that's the way I enjoy it. This morning it was back to the routine and God reminded me during my time alone with Him that each day is a blessing....and I'm grateful for every one.
My class built this on Friday....can you tell what it is?
No? Hey, they did it in about 20 minutes so all things considering, it's not too bad. It's supposed to be Solomon's temple. If you looked inside, you'd see 2 cherubims and the ark of God complete with two stone tablets. They each had a part of the temple to build and contribute. We build it each year and it always looks basically the same, but each class gives it their own personality. We are studying I Kings in Bible class as you may have guessed. It's always fascinating to me (probably more to me than the kiddos) how much detail is given to this temple in the book of I Kings. Go back and read chapters 5-8 at some point. The temple was exquisite. It was made of the finest materials and no expense was spared. It even says that no hammer or nail was used....every piece just fit into place. How amazing is that? I would've loved to have seen this temple in person. I can only imagine how amazing it would've been. After it was finished in chapter 8, God's presence fills the temple like a cloud. Obviously, He was pleased as His Spirit moved through the entire building. What a wonderful place that would've been to visit, worship, praise, pray, sing, meditate, etc. When I had the pleasure to visit Jerusalem a few years ago, I saw where the temple once stood, but of course it is no longer there like it was. And I think that's how it's meant to be.
I Corinthians 6:19-20 reads:
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.
A physical temple is no longer needed for God. We are the temple. You. Me. According to this and other verses, each of us in our own bodies houses the Spirit of God. His presence still fills the temple like it did in Solomon's day. What a wonderful reality. We don't have to travel to Jerusalem to see the temple or even the remains of it. We see the temple every time we look in a mirror. God has built a new temple inside of us and we are to use it to glorify God every second of every day. Sometimes we (myself included) mess up and defile the temple but we never lose the presence of God or His Spirit. And check out this amazing verse I discovered the other day.
2 Corinthians 5:5
5 Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.
GUARANTEEING. I love that word. Our salvation is guaranteed and we have the Spirit of God inside us as a "deposit"..... as an assurance. When I read that the other day it was a complete renewal of my hope, longing, and assurance of Heaven one day. Why do we often live like we're trying to "earn" Heaven when it's already been given to us? We should live like we're going home and celebrating what is to come. Heaven is not ours to win. We've already won it! It is only ours to lose if we choose through our sin not to accept this amazing gift. From now on, I plan to try even harder to abstain from sin, not because it'll keep me from Heaven (as it can), but more importantly because it tears down God's temple. It defiles what He's given me and is a slap in the face to my Father when He's blessed me with a "guarantee" of eternal life with Him.
If someone gave me a wonderful birthday gift, I would never offend them or go against them in return. Why would this gift from God be any different?
Build up your temple. Make it a house of God that he is pleased with. And realize that His Spirit inside you is the first taste of what is to come. It's assured. It's a given. It's definite. It's Heaven. Praise God!