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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

God Is Here

What is your sanctuary? Most of us would say that it is a place where we go to find peace. A quiet walk, soft music, the company of a friend....a church.

Dictionary.com offers some of the following definitions of a sanctuary: an especially holy place in a temple or a church, the place around the altar, a sacred or holy place. I grew up going to church and whenever someone spoke about the sanctuary, you knew exactly what that meant. It was where the congregation came together to worship. God's house.

Let's take a look at what the Bible might have to say about where the sanctuary or "especially holy place" might be...

1 Corinthians 3:16, "Don't you know that you yourselves are God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you?"
1 Corinthians 6:19, "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; your were bought with a price. Therefore, honor God with your body."

I am the temple. The sanctuary is ME! In light of these scriptures, the words to a song titled "God is Here" by Martha Munizzi, and Israel & Maleesa Houghton take on interesting meaning:

"There is a sweet anointing in this sanctuary." Remember? The Holy Spirit lives in YOU! What sweeter anointing is there? When is the last time you felt God's Spirit all over you? That is His anointing.

"There is a stillness in the atmosphere." Peace - sweet peace. When God indwells our sanctuary, we do not have to experience the worry, the anxiety, the stress of this world. I love it when during times of worship, you can just feel that peace and stillness come upon you. Zephaniah 3:17 tells us that God will quiet us with his love. That is Godly stillness....and peace. Is the atmosphere in your sanctuary still?

"O come lay down the burdens you have carried,"  1 Peter 5:7, "Cast ALL your anxiety on Him because He cares for you." We do not walk alone. God is walking, not beside us, but in us. He indwells His sanctuary.

"For in this sanctuary, God Is Here." "They will call Him...Immanuel...God With Us." God is in this sanctuary. Yes, He's in the area around the altar, and in the big room with the pews and a pulpit. But He's somewhere else, too. In the sanctuary of me. I can have His anointing, I can have His peace, and I can know that I do not have to carry my burdens, because He is in ME.

In a message by one of my favorite radio pastors, Dr.Tony Evans made the statement, "Beloved, God does not want you to come to the sanctuary to worship...He wants you to bring it with you!"  How might our worship change if we could really catch sight of the fact that we are God's temple, His holiest place? We are sacred because of Him. And worship can take place anywhere because we have the sanctuary with us.

Enjoy the song:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOUSbLehBhA

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