Monday, May 10, 2010

This is My House

Women of Faith:

Have you ever said (or heard), “This is my house, you will do as I say?” I know as Mom’s (and sometimes even wives) we have probably said this to our teenagers more than once.
We feel this way not only about our homes, but even our possessions (like when our teenagers take our cars, or someone borrows a special item.)

I think God must be feeling that way right now about the world he created; like “I, God, created this house, why aren’t you doing as I say?” “Why are you trying to create your own rules?” “It would be so much easier for you if you just listened to and did as I asked, and as I have taught you to do.”

Jesus said to his disciples: “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him,and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; yet the word you hear is not mine but that of the Father who sent me.”
Jn 14:23-29

God gave us what He said were the most important commands to “love him” and to “love each other.” And He gave us the 10 commandments to live by—to not have false idols, to keep Holy the Sabbath to obey our parents, to not steal, lie, commit adultery, or have false pride.

And yet look at our ways as sinners: We worship money and continuously “need” things other than food, clothing or a shelter—our decisions being made not by what will help others, but what will help “me.”

Only 30% of the 50% (that’s 15%) of those of us that profess that we are Christian attend church every week.

We break the covenant of marriage, not because of abuse or for safety reasons, but because we are “tired of working,” “aren’t happy,” or “feel something less than “in love.”

We think we “deserve” something, and we teach our children they should “have” everything; or we “give” them things to “make them happy,” because we want them to be our friends.” And then we wonder, at home and at work, why we can’t or don’t have kids who take responsibility, know how to work, or listen to their parents or bosses, but instead are trying to live by “their rules,” or make their own paths.

Sometimes the reason we don’t obey is “we think we know better.” And sometimes the reason we don’t obey is we don’t like the rule, or we think the rule will “hurt” or be too difficult a path.

The same gospel, Jn 14:23-29, finishes: “I have told you this while I am with you. The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe.”

So what can we do in our lives to “listen to the Spirit;” to not “let our hearts be troubled,” to listen to the Father’s teachings and the Spirits reminders of Jesus’ teachings? How are we seeking the spiritual instead of the worldly? How are we rejoicing in the simple pleasures? Do we count our blessings and find joy in what we have, instead of what we think we deserve?

Who, or what, is He setting before us each day with the gentle and sometimes commanding words of our parent, our Father, telling us to live by His rules, His commands because “this is His house, and we are supposed to live by His rules!”

Dear God: Thank you for putting me in “your house!” Forgive me for trying to make my own rules, for worrying about how to “control” my destiny, for setting my own rules to make life easier. Help me to be satisfied by what I have and to see the simple pleasures which are part of each moment. Help me to live by your rules. Thank you for giving me “things” I don’t need or deserve. Help me to use them and my talents wisely and for your glory.

Have faith and listen to God’s rules this week—Hope to see you around “in His house!”

Blessings, Charlotte

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