This past Sunday, we began a new series at our annual picnic entitled "Build Up the Temple" where we are talking about the history of Solomon's Temple and what it means for our personal life. At the end of the message, I left our people with a simple statement... "Start treating your life like a place of worship rather than a frat house." In the moment of saying that, I made the comment that it was probably one of the more bold statements I've made from stage. But today, I still stand by that statement and see it as even more true.
Every day we are laying a foundation for our future and our eternity. Every day we have a choice to be building the correct type of foundation and location of that foundation. How we choose to deal with these things will affect how our life and eternity will end up looking. We need to use great wisdom and guidance when putting our life together. Here's Paul's description of laying a foundation in our own life, and the importance of doing it wisely:
"By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames." 1 Cor. 3:10-15
When we die, there will be a purifying fire that will burn all that is not eternal away. So if we are building our life on reputation and wealth, it will go away and our eternity crumbles. In this life you have a choice to build an eternal foundation that will last forever. But when we die, that foundation is put to the test. Much like a foundation on the Gulf Coast during a hurricane, it will either crumble away at the pressure or sustain what it supports. But if we build our life on a foundation that is meant to last into eternity, we will reap the reward of Heaven.
I feel like sometimes, we fail to realize that we are a dwelling place of the Lord. 1 Corinthians 6:19 says, "Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?" The way we fill up our "temple" is a perfect reflection of what our eternity will look like. If our life is filled with things of the Lord like generosity, a passion for Jesus, and a heart of compassion then we will be able to sustain into an eternity of Heaven. But if we fill our temple with gossip, un-forgiveness, bigotry towards others, selfishness, and drunkenness then the Spirit of God will have no part in living inside of us. And without Him inside of us, we will not be spending eternity in Heaven and instead with will be an eternity in pain and suffering.
So what kinds of things do you need to get rid of in your life in order to create more room for the Holy Spirit? Maybe it is something like drinking or drug use... Or possibly it is something a little more subtle, (gossip, negativity, racism, selfishness) that is separating you from the heart of God? Part of what I want to do in my life is to always be purging things that fill up my spirit that prevent more of Jesus in my life. Even things that may not be a big deal to some people, I find it a bigger deal that it is preventing Jesus to be a bigger part of my life.
What is something that you can purge today? Start with something small. Maybe it's a simple thought process. Maybe it's saying no to that extra meeting. Or maybe it's opening your YouVersion Bible app and reading the verse of the day so that you get God's Word on your mind. Every day you can do something small so that over time, it becomes something HUGE.