John 14:23 “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching.<sup class="crossreference" value="(P)”> My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.”

     What a wonderful promise!  All we have to do is to show our love for Jesus by obedience to His teaching and He will come and be a part of our family.  He’ll move in and live with us.  His rules become your house rules rather than what the world passes off for morality. Fear of God replaces fear of man.  The home truly becomes a place of refuge, rest and restoration.  Many ache for that in a world filled with trouble even for Christians.

     Jesus told us that we (Christians) would have problems and He would be there with us through them; “. . . In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)  We know as Christians the blessings we enjoy even in the midst of trouble.  This knowledge is the source of joy and peace.  How do we know this?   We know because He tells us through His Word; “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. . ..”  (the first half of John 16:33)  We can live His truths every day in our homes if He abides with us.

     A few years ago we had dinner guests.  As we sat down to our meal our guests remarked about how peaceful and quiet our old home was.  One person remarked there must be many peaceful ghosts in the house.  I said there was only one ghost in our home – The Holy Ghost and He brought the peace.   It’s odd that many in our time acknowledge the spiritual reality of our existence and are even sensitive to it yet have difficulty accepting His Word.  All blessings come from Him.

     Religious people will tell you that the House of God is their particular church down the street.  They will go and visit God once a week for an hour (and no more than an hour).  If they are especially pious they will come to a midweek and read His Word.  And sadly for some, that is where His rule starts and ends –  in His house not theirs.  I know this because for many years I was such a person.  Religion can promote the opposite of faith by keeping God at a distance in His house far away from daily life.  It’s OK to visit every Sunday but don’t bring Him home with you.  If you have to be seen with Him during the week make sure you go to the ‘mid-week’.

    We make churches around religious idols. And we worship these idols when we try to keep God inside the walls of our churches.  This situation is so contrary to the heart of God.  “What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God has said: ‘I will live with them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.’ ” (2 Corinthians 6:16)  If you  do not walk with God to church, if you do not abide with God in church as you do at home and if you do not walk home with God after church, what you worship is an idol!

     The Good News of the Gospel is that even in all of our stiff necked obstinacy to go our own way, to live by our own rules and to make our own religion to  ‘put God in His place’, He still loves us and He wants to be with us.  Jesus calls out;  “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.” (Revelation 3:20)

     Praise the Lord!