Monday, October 08, 2007

Houses of Glory

This book I'm reading, "Hullabaloo - Discovering Glory in Everyday Life" by Dr. Timothy Paul Jones, is pointing out that God's glory is found in the hullaballoo of life. In all the every day sort of things. He makes a case that we all are searching for something, always something more. That's me. As Christians we "know" that there's a "God-Shaped hole" in all of us, but we try to fill that hole with needless things. Churches try to fill "needs" of its people with needless things. I've been trying to find God at NB, through "worship", in SaLT, in people, in whatever.

The author of the book says that when the youth at church find themselves in trouble, the solution is often to add more activities to keep them occupied. When church attendance starts slipping, we want to launch exciting new programs. When we aren't baptizing enough people, we find some new evangelism program and do that.

He makes the point that churches have a tendency to provide more and more programs, and Christians buy more and more stuff at Christian bookstores, to help them get what they are longing for, but that no program and no product can fill one's life with the glory for which one was created. Only God can do that. It can be found when we embrace the glory that God has already embedded in the hullaballoo of our present life. He's not saying any of that stuff can't be helpful, but it is only a supplement, and at times serves to blind us from what we really need.

I love going to Women of Faith Conferences because God does speak to me there through the speakers, and the worship, and it is a wonderful experience. A kind of "refresher" in God. I love going to Christian concerts for the same reason. Doing Beth Moore studies, or Experiencing God is good stuff too. While I'm in the midst of those things, it seems I can see God more clearly and I am reminded He is here with me. However, after the concert is over, the conference ends, and the in-depth study ceases, does God leave me? No, He does not, but it feels that way. Dr. Timothy Paul Jones is saying that God's Glory is not in things, or in doings, but actually housed in us. He is there, in the hullabaloo. He has embedded Himself in all things...but we are too busy too notice.

We are so distracted from seeing the glory of God.

Now, check this out. The transfiguration. On that mountain, Peter caught a glimpse of that glory he was craving! And what was the first thing He wanted to do? His response was to build memorials...he wanted to encase the glory of God in tents! But God basically said "whatever Peter, you have no clue!" Now, get this, in John 17:22, a few moments before Jesus was betrayed in the garden He said, praying to the Father, "I have given them the glory that you gave me". "I HAVE GIVEN THEM THE GLORY!" The glory of God is already encased in a tent...IN US! Isn't that cool!???!!!

You see, I've been trying to encase the glory of God in books, in SaLT, in NB, in blogs, in whatever, and never even see God in anything anymore. I go on about my days totally missing Him. I can still remember those first few months of my walk with the Lord. Do you know the sky was bluer? The grass was greener? All the colors of the spectrum were brighter and more brilliant! Nature was alive and buzzing all around me. I could see God in the faces of people I met. Music was sweeter, and the smell of a rose was awe-inspiring! It was because I was looking through "glory-covered glasses" at all of the hullaballoo! God was in all of the hullabaloo of everyday life. The hullabaloo has been filled with God's presence for the purpose of reminding me that I lived every moment of my life in Him, but now I'm distracted and am blind. Thirsty.

I got way too distracted. Too much brain, not enough heart. I think I've said that before.

Now I need to step away, take a few breaths, and start fresh and new. Possibly a new SaLT? Possibly new other things? I don't know, but I do know that the way things are going is not spiritually healthy for me. I've had a bad attitude for a long time. I've had a critical spirit that has gone beyond being constructive and has only been burying God's glory in me, beneath piles and piles of junk that I don't want anymore. "Stuff" has been taking it's toll and unfortunately, it has been bubbling its way to the surface and comes out in my curt responses to people, and "I don't really care" attitude. Very unChristlike.

God is in the hullabaloo of life on purpose, and I carry Him there, for I am a house of glory.

Here is a powerful, tear-jerker video that I happened across on YouTube that captures a person's struggle to find God and remain close to Him.

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