Deep clean the cupboards, refrigerator/freezer, empty the closet, look under the cushions, dump out my purse and pockets, thin out and rearrange the attic, make room in the garage for the car, and certainly detox my body. Whew. Spring is coming and once again the load is lightened…or is it?
A couple weeks ago when the revival began at a college in Asbury, KY, I checked it out. I’m fortunate as I have connections in writers’ groups with people I know and trust – people who live in Asbury, have a child in the college, or attended the college themselves. One word kept repeating through all the responses.
Now there is deep cleaning.
I know I’ve referred to the little booklet My Heart, Christ’s Home before. In it Munger describes our lives as a house and relates each room to those parts of our lives (kitchen – food, fellowship, living room – reading, watching entertainment), and so on, leaving the worst for last – the closets. The secrets. The things we don’t want to deal with.
Recently it seems verses about tents keep coming up. When that happens and I sense a theme, I start hunting out the verses of the theme until I learn something new. In Isaiah 54 the Jewish church is told to stretch out their outreach (to encompass new spiritual children from the Gentiles).
Isaiah 54″2 “Enlarge the place of your tent,
stretch your tent curtains wide,
do not hold back;
lengthen your cords,
strengthen your stakes.
I found the original meaning behind the word tent was not home like in Munger’s allegory, but tabernacle/temple as in place of worship, and so I began praying about my temple. My soul. I do not have the power to make my soul larger, but I do have the ability to clean it out and make room for God’s holy filling.
I thought of my experience of receiving the Holy Spirit when I received Christ. I got all of the Spirit – but did I give access to the Spirit to all of me? Had I given Him full access from time to time, then refilled that space with “little idols” of stuff, food, dreams? When I detox my body I feel lighter, brighter and more eager to follow after what made my body healthier and stronger. When I clear out a room or a bookshelf, a closet or a handbag, suddenly there is also a lightness – spaciousness – for what is more important than the clutter I’d not touched for ages.
Could it be the same for my soul?
I picture me clearing my tent/temple of the Holy Spirit – enlarging the available space. I stretch the curtains wide (exposing – not hiding anything from the Lord) – repenting, cleansing, letting the fresh Spirit air flow through. Then and only then am I ready to reach out – lengthen my cords, making room to eagerly welcome others. I invite them in, not to see all my stuff, but to celebrate my space.
Then I strengthen my stakes.
Now I am not a camper, but I’ve seen tents, and I know the stakes are to keep the tent grounded.
Ephesians 2:19-20 says how important this is:
Do whatever it takes to be thoroughly grounded in the truth. (God’s Word)
And Ephesians 3:17-19
That Christ may dwell (be at home) in your hearts through faith —that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God”
It’s the difference of preparing for company for a few hours and inviting a loved one to make their home with you – with access to every secret place.
Prepare your temple to welcome His Spirit that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.