Tuesday, August 16, 2016

"Whose I Am" - 08/16/16 - 2 Kings 24-25, 2 Chronicles 36


And then he plundered The Temple of everything valuable, cleaned it out completely; he emptied the treasuries of The Temple of God, the treasuries of the king and his officials, and hauled it all, people and possessions, off to Babylon.(2 Chronicles 36:18)

ABBA opened my eyes to an awareness about "stuff" while watching the show "Storage Wars". I enjoy seeing what value they get for their discoveries. It constantly amazes me how so many persons just walk away from, forget, or just don't care about "stuff". At first I thought they were foolish, but then ABBA helped me see things from another perspective.
"Storage Wars" is an eye opener to see how others will one day dig into - and I mean that literally - without any care about the sentimental value of my stuff. It has caused me to reevaluate what I am keeping and why.

Every once in awhile I will watch an episode of "Hoarders" and relate it to going to the doctor. It becomes my motivation to look about this place ABBA has blessed us with and rid it of more "stuff". There are still some things I am hanging onto, but only because of the sentimental meaning behind them. Things I am working on getting rid of because bottom line - they really aren't something I enjoy or would have purchased on my own. I am trying to live with less. Not only because of the freedom for myself, but the freedom the kids will enjoy not having to wade through and rid of "stuff" when I am gone.

In The Scriptures, the people placed such pride and their worth in the Temple and within a short amount of time it was destroyed. Burned or carried away - totally dismantled. Today, I look about to see if I am allowing anything or anyone be what I place my worth, my pride into.
I am His Temple. The Holy Spirit resides within me.

The "shell" of me will one day return to the dust it came from, but the "soul" of me will be joining my ABBA. I am to be a good steward of this "shell" (failing miserably at times), and keep it in order. Keep it filled with only things that honor ABBA. Keep it clean. Keep it at the ready.

My daily "temple keeping" begins with His Living Word. I fill it within me, taking it into my heart and receiving nourishment from it throughout the day as I chew on it.

He is helping me to not get my worth out of stuff accumulated. Helping me to not get my worth out of my work.

Helping me to not get my worth out of who I am, but "whose" I am.

"Now God has us where He wants us,
with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus.

Saving is all His idea, and all His work.

All we do is trust Him enough to let him do it.

It’s God’s gift from start to finish!

We don’t play the major role.

If we did, we’d probably go around bragging that we’d done the whole thing!
No, we neither make nor save ourselves.

God does both the making and saving.
He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join Him in the work He does,
the good work He has gotten ready for us to do,
work we had better be doing.

But don’t take any of this for granted.

It was only yesterday that you outsiders to God’s ways had no idea of any of this,
didn’t know the first thing about the way God works,
hadn’t the faintest idea of Christ.

You knew nothing of that rich history of God’s covenants and promises in Israel,
hadn’t a clue about what God was doing in the world at large.

Now because of Christ—dying that death, shedding that blood—you who were once out of it altogether are in on everything.

The Messiah has made things up between us so that we’re now together on this,
both non-Jewish outsiders and Jewish insiders.

He tore down the wall we used to keep each other at a distance.
He repealed the law code that had become so clogged with fine print and footnotes that it hindered more than it helped.

Then He started over.

Instead of continuing with two groups of people separated by centuries of animosity and suspicion, He created a new kind of human being, a fresh start for everybody.

Christ brought us together through His death on The Cross.

The Cross got us to embrace, and that was the end of the hostility.
Christ came and preached peace to you outsiders and peace to us insiders.
He treated us as equals, and so made us equals.

Through Him we both share the same Spirit and have equal access to the Father.

That’s plain enough, isn’t it?
You’re no longer wandering exiles.
This kingdom of faith is now your home country.

You’re no longer strangers or outsiders.

You belong here, with as much right to the name Christian as anyone.

God is building a home.
He’s using us all—irrespective of how we got here—in what He is building.
He used the apostles and prophets for the foundation.

Now He’s using you,

fitting you in brick by brick, stone by stone,
with Christ Jesus as The Cornerstone that holds all the parts together.

We see it taking shape day after day—a holy temple built by God, all of us built into it, a temple in which God is quite at home." (Ephesians 2:10-22)

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