What comes to mind when you hear the word “home”? Perhaps you think of rest, security, or comfort, or maybe the freedom to be yourself. Our home is like a “sacred space” where we find peace and rest. But imagine if strangers were coming and
going freely into your home, it wouldn’t feel the same anymore!
This may help us understand what Jesus felt when he confronted the merchants in the Temple. (John 2:13-16) He wasn’t condemning the merchants for doing their job. People needed to buy animals for sacrifice and to exchange money. He
just didn’t want them doing it in the Temple. This was his Father’s house and his sacred space. We, too, are God’s temples, and the Holy Spirit wants to dwell in us and make of us a sacred space where He dwells. (1 Corinthians 3:16). You could say that our hearts have been made to be at home with God. When we let other concerns or occupations crowd in, they crowd out the Lord and we lose peace and security from being with him. But when we put God first, we find the peace we long for. We are ruled by the Holy Spirit instead of by temptations, our emotions, or whatever life is throwing at us at the moment.
Of course, being God’s temple doesn’t mean that we can’t find joy in the natural world. Think of the joy on your wedding day or the birth of a child, or think of the satisfaction you feel in a job well done. Those are gifts and blessings, given by our heavenly Papa as he delights in seeing us receive them happily. It’s a good thing we have the Holy Spirit to help us establish the right priorities! When we need some “housecleaning,” we can be sure that the Spirit won’t use a whip, as Jesus did with the money changers. Instead, he will speak gently to our consciences and insist if necessary, but always in a gentle way. Therefore, let us preserve our time with the Lord in prayer. Treasure it, and be vigilant in guarding it. It’s in prayer, most of all, that we can keep our temple a “sacred space”, clean and prevent it from getting infected by “strangers”.
“Father, thank you for making me your temple. Help me to put you first so that I can find my home in you.”