YOUR HEART – CHRIST’S HOME

It says in Ephesians 3:16-17, “I ask God from the wealth of his glory to give you power thru his Spirit to be strong in your inner selves, and I pray that Christ will make his home in your hearts through faith.”

This is one of the most remarkable doctrines in the Bible.  Imagine, Jesus Himself, through the presence of the Holy Spirit will actually enter a heart, settle down and be at home there.  Our hearts can become His abode!

“If a man loves me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him and make our abode with him” (John 14:23).  Again we have the same principle being stated.  God does not live in the temple at Jerusalem, the church building, nor the Ark of the Covenant anymore.  He now dwells in human hearts!  Our bodies are His temple.  “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (I Cor 1:27).   “The kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21). Why?  Because God lives there.  Here, in our hearts, we welcome, serve, please and fellowship with Him.

I had a fire one day, after having just cleaned my house thoroughly the week before.  I was so relieved because now my house was all caught up to par.  Thus, I began a new schedule of keeping it that way; then the kitchen had a grease fire.  Smoke went everywhere throughout the entire house.  Much to my amazement, all the unseen cobwebs that hid in tiny corners of each room all became exposed.  The smoke had traveled to each room causing the cobwebs that had been hidden, to turn dark black.  I thought my rooms were all clean!  I was walking in complete confidence that each room was up to par.

So it is with our hearts.  We invite Jesus into our hearts when we get saved, and He gladly comes in.  We say, “ all I am and all I have are Yours Lord.  Come in and feel comfortable in Your new abode.  Let me show you around.”

The 1st room I take Jesus into is the Library or Study (let us call this room the Mind).  It is a very small room with thick walls but it is also a very important room because it controls the rest of the house.

Jesus comes in and looks around at the books on the bookshelf, the magazines on the table, the pictures on the walls; which are the imaginations and thoughts of our mind.  The things that we allow ourselves to see, to envision and to think about.  Then, all of a sudden, we realize we need a radical change in this room (our minds).  We ask Him to make it what it ought to be, because the Word says in II Cor 10:5, “bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.”

Jesus says sure, ”1st of all take all you are reading and all you are seeing which is not helpful, pure, good and true and throw it out!  Now, fill the library/study (our mind) with Scriptures and, ““Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right.  Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable.  Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise”” (Phil 4:8).  When our minds begin to think about these things, then all else retreats as Christ Himself begins to be formed in us, causing us to begin to take on His likeness.  Our minds are very very important because this is the entrance point into our hearts.  In our minds we either receive something that goes into our heart or reject something, so it won’t be allowed entrance into our heart.  Also the Scriptures that come to my mind are, “…For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he…” (Proverbs 23:7), and “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh” (Matt 12:34).  We must be careful what we allow to go into our hearts.  And it gets there through our minds.

Next we go to the Dining Room (the room of our appetites and desires).  This is a large room and a lot of time is spent here satisfying our wants.  We say, “come in Lord, I am sure you will be pleased with what we serve here.” Jesus asks, “what is on the menu for dinner?”  “Leeks and garlic from Egypt” we answer.  Worldly fare, there is nothing really radically wrong with any one item, but it is not the food that should satisfy a real Christian.  Jesus said, “My meat is to do the will of my Father.”  Doing His will is the only satisfying food we can really enjoy and that lasts!  There is no pleasure that we may pursue, no purchase that we may make, no vacation that we may take, no friends or family members we enjoy, no job or social status that we may climb to, or anything else that we may desire that can ever satisfy us, because that empty spot in each of us, that we keep trying to fill with all of the above, was only meant to be filled by only one thing, the Lord Himself!

Then we take Jesus into the Living Room (the place of our quiet time).  This is the place where we read and pray and fellowship with Jesus.  Sometimes we go there out of a sense of duty that we must perform in order for us to progress in our Christian walk. However, we forget that Jesus is WAITING for us in that living room.  It is because He loves us and has bought us with such a great cost, and desires so very much to fellowship with us.  If we could only see that He is waiting for us so patiently, how our attitude would change when we go to the Living Room to be with Him. No longer would it be out of a sense of duty, but out of anticipation and joy to finally get away from the earthy duties of life.  We actually have the privilege of being with our Lord and Savior!  He is the most important One in the whole world.

The next room we take Him into is the Workshop (Our Talents).  This is the place where we produce for the kingdom of God.  You may think He doesn’t have very much to work with, since you have very little ability to offer.  But then He puts His strong hands on yours and He begins to produce the work through you!  So you must give Him all you have, no matter how little it may seem (like the boy with the 2 small fish and 5 loaves of bread).  Then just sit back and watch to see how He produces through you.

The Family Room – where we go to relax with family members and friends, enjoying certain activities and amusements.  Here we need to be most careful because perhaps the Lord is not always pleased with what we see or enjoy in the family room, especially concerning our viewing habits.  Perhaps they have become more tolerant than they should be.  Have we ever put on a video or watched something on TV that we felt was questionable but we watched it anyway?  We felt the Holy Spirit inside of us cringe, and we felt very uncomfortable, but we just “had” to see how the movie turned out.

Maybe you get all ready to go out and Jesus says, “Oh, are we going out tonight?”  You say, “Well, Lord I don’t think you would really like this movie, party, fellowship gathering of unsaved friends.  I know, let’s go out tomorrow night, and we’ll go to a prayer meeting.”  Jesus looks sad and says, “That’s all right, but I thought that when I came into your home (heart) we were going to do everything together!  We were going to be ONE.”  And we still say, “Well, we’ll do something tomorrow.”  I tried this when I first got saved, but soon I felt convicted thinking, “what kind of friend was I to deliberately leave Jesus out while I went someplace that I should not be.”  I found out that I cannot have a good time without Him.  So He comes into the family room or the place where we take our recreation and He changes things, making them honorable and pleasing to Him.  He does not want to take away our fun but to make our fun more pure and acceptable in His sight.  Then when we go to bed at night we don’t have to feel guilty that we watched something or did something that we know He would not approve of.  We go to bed with a clear conscious and know that we have been pleasing to Him throughout our entire day, even in the family room.

The Hall Closet – The secret places, or things or people that we don’t want to let go of.  “There seems to be an odor in that closet”, Jesus says.  Give me the key.  We become angry and don’t want to give it to Him.  So He begins to go outside (withdraws His presence).  We think, “Oh no!”  “I’ll go get the key Lord!  But You have to open the closet and clean it out.  I haven’t the strength to do it.”  Jesus says, “I know.  Just give Me the key (authorize Me to take care of the closet and I will).”  Sure enough Jesus goes in and starts cleaning it all out.  He throws out all the garbage; He paints it, and fixes it all up and oh what victory and release we receive!  Having the things I’ve been hanging onto, that were not good for me, but I didn’t have the strength to give them up, all cleansed away giving us such peace.  Having the destructive things that would eventually hurt me or hamper my walk with the Lord, taken out of my life brings me great joy!

We  can’t do it!  We cannot keep our hearts clean for Christ.  Once we get one room clean another one gets dirty, and it becomes a vicious circle.  We become very weary trying to maintain a clean heart and an obedient life.  We ask the Lord “is there any chance that You will take responsibility for the entire house, just like You did the closet?  I want You to operate it for me, and to make my heart what it ought to be.”  At that point, Jesus’ face lights up! “Certainly child, He says, that’s what I came to do!  You cannot be a victorious Christian; that’s impossible!  Let Me do it through you and for you.  But, I am not the owner of this house.  I am just a guest, with no authority, since it is not Mine.”

We drop to our knees and cry out, LORD!  “You have been a guest, and I have been the host.  From now on I am going to be the SERVANT and YOU are going to be the LORD!”

We get a piece of paper from across the room.  It’s the deed (ourselves) that previously was in the desk drawer.  We sign it over to the Lord Jesus Christ for all time and eternity.  “Here!  Here it is my Lord – all that I am and all that I have are YOURS forever.  Now YOU run the house.”

Then in an instant, we find a deep sense of peace, a sense of pure joy and contentment, like we’ve never known before.  These blessings begin to fill our hearts, when the King of Hearts is seated rightfully on His throne!

Is Christ seated in the throne room of your heart?  Have you totally given every area of your life to Him totally?  Can He ask anything of you and you will do it?  Will you go anywhere He wants you to go, or do anything He wants you to do?  Have you turned over completely your finances, your money, your children, family and husband?  Have you turned over your job, your career, your plans for the future and your own will to Him?  Is there any room in your heart that He cannot take complete control of?  If the answer is yes, you can ask Him right now, from this time forth to take that area and become Lord, enthroned in all the rooms of your heart, so that there is nothing you haven’t surrendered to Him.  He does such a beautiful job when we hand it all over to Him, giving Him the keys and just “letting go.”  Then, we get the most wonderful benefit of all, we can become “conformed to the image of Christ” which is our goal in life!