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How to maintain a strong spiritual house.

Posted on Tue, Jun 3, 2008

Whosoever cometh to me, and heareth my sayings, and doeth them, I will shew you to whom he is like: He is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it: for it was founded upon a rock.” Luke 6:47-48


Last week, as I was walking along Fifth Avenue in New York City, I began to reflect anew on the aesthetic and eyes-catching features of the buildings that I saw and those elsewhere in the city – gigantic hotels, artistic historical sites, mind-splitting corporate headquarters, museums, and other great structures. I thank God for the knowledge and craftsmanship of the men and women who designed and erected them. At the same time, I also refllected on another side to these great buildings - the culture of their maintenance- how so much in labor and millions more in cash are sunk year after year in care to keep them gorgeous? They have been built to last for several hundred years, and with maintenance, they will remain so for many more years, but certainly not for ever.

Dear reader, do you know the bible calls our body a building from God? Thus, everyone of us has a building of incomparable worth and within this body is the soul, which will last forever. Should we not be much more consumed with caring for what will never die? How spiritually strong and healthy are you? Here are helps from Jesus Christ for a strong spiritual house. He says we must “come to me, hear my sayings, and do them.”

I want to explain what each of these three advices entails as they relate to maintaining a strong spiritual house. First, Jesus desires closeness with us. This explains why He wants us to come to Him first of all. He understands that unless we are close to Him we will not adhere to His advice. Therefore, primarily, He advices you and me to come to Him. Jesus Christ is the archetype of love and the embodiment of everything that is good and worth living for in this life and all eternity. He is the source of nourishment for your body, soul and spirit. He passionately enjoins us to come to Him. He owns all things and knows every area in us where needs exist. He knows what is best for us because He created us and our “times are in (His)Thy hands” Psalms 31:15  “in Him we live, and move and have all our beings” Acts 17:28 .  He invites you and me to Himself and this call is without class distinction. Those who are in trouble as well as those who are not; poor as well as wealthy men and women are invited. He says:  “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden and I will give you rest” Matthew 11:28. “I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20.  Coming to Jesus Christ is wise. As He has said; it is like building a house on a solid foundation, which even with floods of complicated abrasions, is certainly insured against all risks. As the master-builder when we "come" to Him, denoting that we are close to Him, He will show us the required materials to maintain a strong spiritual house.

Aside from coming to Him, His second advice is that we must be open and thorough to hear what He says to us: “… the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a littleIsaiah 28:13. We must be wholly and squarely immerse and sunk in His word, which must consume us because it is the determinant of our relationship with Him. Here, Jesus provides the formula for success and the clearest way to knowing Him:  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand."
 
We cannot ignore any bit of His word- whether or not it is pleasing to us. His word will make over our lives for Him and our communities no matter how vile we may be. As earlier explained, His word is the daily nourishment that our bodies require to maintain spiritual vitality. In His word, we will learn how to talk back to Him in prayer - a vital material to maintain a strong spiritual house - and pray according to His will. So when we come to Jesus Christ, we must hear His word with open hearts. This word is free and affordable. Thus, it is available for every one. “Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. …hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness. Isaiah 55:1-2  

The word is also antidote for sin and a defense against all unrighteousness. “for the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.”  Hebrews 4:12 . It will wash us clean from all unfaithfulness when we confess and forsake them. We must hear the word and pass on its message to our children, who themselves must spread the good news to their children “shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done….that the generation to come might know [them, even] the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children” Psalms 78:5 . In so doing, we will not only nourish our souls, and our bodies; also, we will prosper within the context of the word, have peace, and stay refreshed.

Further to coming to Jesus and hearing His sayings, Jesus Christ says that we must be committed to doing His sayings. As men always seek to keep the words of those they love,  so Jesus said” "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him, and make Our abode (home) with him." (John 14:23 )

It is unimaginable that the blessings of doing His sayings include Jesus Christ of all creation making a home with us. Thus, He abides in us night and day radiating His joy through us, ordering our steps and directing our pathways into all goodness in this world and godliness too. Furthermore, by hearing His word, and doing them, appropriation of His promises becomes our lifestyle because we are aware that He loves us and will not withhold any good thing from us. We are “the apple of His eyes.” He said: "He who has My commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me; and he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him, and will disclose Myself to him." (John 4:21 ).

While in Him therefore, we have no need for fear. We have a comprehensive insurance policy which covers us against all of life’s wear and tear. "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and they shall never perish; and no one shall snatch them out of My hand."(
John 10:27)

Dear reader, having now received the essential advice on maintaining a strong and healthy spiritual building - coming to Jesus, hearing His sayings, and doing them,  won’t you embrace these truths. To knowingly neglect them is being careless. This kind of neglect is self-destructive. Ultimately, it will ruin you forever and separate you from God and all your godly loved ones. Stop and think! Today you have the opportunity. Tomorrow might be too late.

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