Welcome back! I hope you all have had a fantastic few weeks of rest and joy and time for peace and praise! To be honest I thought I would have this written and ready to post weeks ago. I am not sure if it was my natural procrastination that held me back or if it was because the Holy Spirit had something new for me to see before I shared. I will go with the Holy Spirit’s reasoning and timing 🙂 But let’s not wait another moment and jump into it.
I mentioned a few weeks ago that Leviticus is full of laws – 613 commandments to be exact! These are the do’s and dont’s of the covenant God made after rescuing the people from Egypt. Isn’t it comforting to know that God is still rescuing His people thousands of years later and thankfully we do not have 613 commandments to follow to dwell with God!
Often at the beginning of a New Year, I see plenty of people de-cluttering, refreshing, renewing their homes, lives and bodies. Many make a resolution to renew their health – both physically and spiritually. I myself spent an entire day cleaning my office and de-cluttering my book shelf.
As I reflect on this I am reminded of Leviticus 26:9-13 which provides the promises of obedience of those 613 commandments mentioned above:
9 So I will turn toward you and make you fruitful and multiply you, and I will confirm My covenant with you. 10 You will eat the old supply and clear out the old because of the new. 11Moreover, I will make My dwelling among you, and My soul will not reject you. 12I will also walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people. 13I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt so that [you] would not be their slaves, and I broke the bars of your yoke and made you walk erect.
Breaking the bars of our yokes- doesn’t that sound great?!!! However, the remaining verses warn of the punishment of disobedience. Not so great!
The New Testament tells us that the greatest commandment is to love the Lord with all your heart, all your soul and all your mind. (Matthew 22:37). I don’t know about you but sometimes that word ALL trips me up. I find myself distracted, my mind running rampant, my heart hurt by or for others and my soul just unsettled. God instructed the Israelites to make a sanctuary to dwell among them (Exodus 25:8). The definition of sanctuary is the “Physical area devoted to the worship of God.”
I long to have a physical place of sanctuary in my home but have not yet found the right spot. However, my friend Christy excitedly shared with our small group months ago about her Jesus Chair and the peace she felt when she was in that chair, headphones on worshipping and praising her God. So much so that she had to advise her husband to stay clear when she was in “the chair.” That time was sacred to her.
To me, sanctuary is not only a physical place but also a soulful place- the place I feel closest to God. The place where I feel Him break the bonds of my yokes and encourage me to take up His yoke (Matthew 11:28). This place of sanctuary may be the traditional church setting, or on the water, watching a sunset, gazing into a warm fireplace – we are so lucky that because of sacrifice of Jesus we are able to bypass those 613 commandments and come to God freely to dwell in sanctuary with Him!
Come back on Thursday and I will share a video focusing on how Jesus tells us in Matthew 11:28 how we can find that peace and sanctuary!
In the meantime, here are a few questions for those of you that would like to think a little deeper. I encourage you to read Leviticus 26 and Matthew chapters 11 and 22.
1) Do you have a space in your home set apart to meet with Jesus?
2) What image does the word “sanctuary” bring to mind?
3) Are there “old” things you haven’t cleared out to make room for the “new” yet?
4) What is one thing you can do today to dwell with God?
Read, think and pray! I would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section below or feel free to private message me. I learn and grow so much through the belief of others! I truly believe we are better when we gather together!