Welcome Here

Hey there!   Hope everyone is doing well!   It’s HOT here, Kansas in the summertime.  The worst part is the humidity.  Remember “Walk outside into a sauna”?  Yep.  We’re still there.  So, grab a glass of iced something and find a cool spot to sit.  Relax from the heat for a minute.  Even with air-conditioned offices, cars, and houses, we still have to get from one to the other in the heat.  Be careful.  And NEVER NEVER NEVER leave a child, elderly person or pet in the car, even ‘for just a minute’.   A car can heat to well over 130 degrees in less than 15 minutes!

Today, I was listening to the local Christian radio station in the car.  I don’t do that too often, I’m usually praying or listening to a favorite worship CD.  Sometimes I just plain don’t like commercial radio, even the Christian stations.  But today, they played one of my favorite songs – twice!  It’s called “Holy Spirit”.  It tells quite a story – and presents quite a challenge.

‘There’s nothing worth more, that could ever come close…’   where do I place my highest value?  What really makes me tick?  Where do I spend my time?  My money?  What captures my attention?  My affection?  Where is my greatest joy?

No thing can compare.”   No ‘thing’.  No mere thing, no material object – no car, house, boat, jewelry, job, no  …   fill in the blank.  Nothing is worth more.  Is that true?  Is there anything in my life that comes close?  Or, has something surpassed Him in my life, vying for my attention moment by moment.  Is there something that I think brings me more happiness, more peace, more fulfillment?

“You’re my living hope.”  Bottom line.  Living hope.  Hope that lives on, no matter what is going on in my life.  Hope that brings joy, brings peace.

“I’ve tasted and seen the sweetest of loves where my heart becomes free and my shame is undone…”   To taste and see…  to experience, to understand what you have. To be so comfortable with someone that your heart is completely free in their presence, there is no shame, no past, no guilt, no pain.  That only happens with the sweetest of loves – the love He has for us.  We have to taste and see that love for ourselves.

“Holy Spirit, You are Welcome Here.”   Of course we say He is.  But is He really welcome in our lives?  Is He welcome in our conversations, at our jobs, in our relationships, in our entertainment?  Would He respond to our friends and family the way we do?  Would He treat our co-workers the same?  How about that homeless guy on the corner?  Or that obnoxious teen at Wal-Mart?  Is He welcome to give us a nudge if we need to show love in a better way?  If we need to give to someone else?  Or do we simply ignore those little ‘feelings’ that would lead us to help someone else, especially if it’s inconvenient?

“To be with You is what our hearts long for…”   Do we long for Him?  Or are we longing for that perfect mate, that better job, that trip to Europe, that new car or latest piece of technology?   What do we dream about all day?  What do we wish for as we lay our head on the pillow at night?

I don’t mean to hole up in a convent or monastery someplace, fasting and praying with no entertainment.  Truly, as I sit here at a friend’s home, a movie is on that I wouldn’t have watched otherwise.  It wasn’t ‘bad’ by society’s standards, but the friend pegged me correctly – I was somewhat uncomfortable.  Does that make me better than her?  Nope.  Does it make me more spiritual?  Maybe, but not for certain.  Does it give evidence that Jesus is more important to me than society’s entertainment?  I hope so.  With that, I also hope it shows that I’m not judging her, although I have my own standards.  I hope it shows that being in love with Jesus is more fulfilling and more satisfying than the emptiness the world has to offer.  That true love, and not the stuff portrayed in the media, is the highest desire of every person, and it can be had!

So, here’s the deal.  The Bible says out of the heart come the issues of life.  (Proverbs 4:23).  So, let’s get the heart right.  Let’s not concentrate on all the stuff not to do, not to desire, not to watch.  Let’s concentrate on Whom to desire and love.  Let’s concentrate on making Him welcome.

Do you need a bit of help?  Find a pastor or priest.  They can help you make Him welcome in your life.  If we can do that, the rest will fall into place.

 

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