“... so that Christ may dwell in your hearts ...”
The Greek word that is translated as “dwell” above is a compound word that is made up of the typical verb “to dwell” or “to house,” oikeo, and adds the intensifier, kata, to the beginning, which suggest the idea of “settling down into one’s permanent habitation” as opposed to an occasional visit. The problem is that many of us live the Christian life as if Jesus were just an occasional visitor that drops by from time to time. We have our set meetings with him … some daily and some weekly. However, the thought of him moving in might feel a little uncomfortable. Not because we don’t want Jesus … we do! We just tend to think that we’re not ready for him to move in.
It’s the same way with our physical houses. Many of us want to have a house that is open to others… that is, if they give us some warning. Why? Because we’ve got to clean up. We need more than just a few minutes to rush around cleaningand picking up all our stuff that we don’t want people to see. Then as we welcome people into our homes we say, “sorry for the mess,” pretending that it is normally much better. Are we really fooling anyone?
The truth of the matter is that we want to look good for other people, and I think that we take that into our relationship with God. So, to think that God is visiting or even moving in, the natural reaction might be to try to clean up first. Well, here’s the good news: You don’t have to clean up before Jesus moves in.
That would be like cleaning up before a cleaning service comes to clean your house. It just doesn’t make any sense. Jesus is the cleaning service. He comes in with his mighty power and he gets to work on all the mess that you have left.
We must learn to trust Jesus to do what he does best … he is the cleaner. That means that we must leave out our dirty dishes and the unfolded laundry for him to see. We can let him see our lustful thoughts and our wandering eyes and our dark secrets. We don’t need to try to fix all that first. Let Jesus do the work.
What are the areas of your heart that you have been keeping from Jesus? Join me in opening the door to even the darkest places of your heart today.
Pastor of Adult Ministries