Morning by Morning, May 30 - Awakening Desire to Pursue Holiness of Heart and Life
Good morning, Lord Jesus. King of kings and Lord of lords, be King of my heart and Lord of my life, this day and every day. ...
"Then I heard Him speaking to me from the temple, while a man stood beside me. And He said to me, 'Son of man, this is the place of My throne and the place of the soles of My feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel forever. No more shall the house of Israel defile My holy name, they nor their kings, by their harlotry or with the carcasses of their kings on their high places. When they set their threshold by My threshold, and their doorpost by My doorpost, with a wall between them and Me, they defiled My holy name by the abominations which they committed; therefore I have consumed them in My anger. Now let them put their harlotry and the carcasses of their kings far away from Me, and I will dwell in their midst forever" (Ezekiel 43:6-9 NKJV).
Your heart is to dwell in our midst forever. In Christ, our heart of Your dwelling place and our body is Your temple (2 Corinthians 3:16). Your Father heart of God longs to have fellowship and intimacy with us. From the beginning You've created us to walk with You in the cool of the day and the garden of Your Presence, but so often our sin and shame, our rebellion and regrets, our compromises and complacency, separate us from hearing Your voice and knowing Your heart and embracing Your love (Genesis 3:8). So often we build our own thresholds and set up our own doorposts by insisting on our own will and our own ways according to what seems right in our own eyes to cover up and displace what is holy and right and pure. That breaks Your heart and sets a wall between us, defiling Your name and our spirits and the intimacy and purity of our relationship with You.
So come, Holy Spirit, in Your purifying, Holy Fire. Burn out of me all that would separate me from You. Refiner's Fire, restore within me a passion to pursue holiness of heart and life and awaken within me an unrelenting desire for Your Presence with no wall between us. Give me a spirit of repentance to keep turning to You and yielding to You with all my heart and mind and soul and strength. "For He is like a refiner's fire and like fullers' soap; He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver, and He will purify the descendants of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, until they present offerings to the Lord in righteousness. Then the offering of Judah and Jerusalem will be pleasing to the Lord as in the days of old and as in former years.... For I the Lord do not change.... Return to Me, and I will return to you, says the Lord of hosts" (Malachi 3:2-7).
I thank You that in Christ, I am forgiven and free, cleansed from all unrighteousness through the Blood of the Lamb (1 John 1:9). I thank You that "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus" (Romans 8:1). And I thank, Lord Jesus, that You who knew no sin were willing to be made sin as my sacrifice for every sin and separation from the Presence of God so that I "might become the righteousness of God" through You and Your grace for me (2 Corinthians 5:12).
But at the same time, I want to truly desire true holiness of heart and life, "the holiness without which no one will see the Lord" (Hebrews 12:14). I want to truly desire to "pursue righteousness" (1 Timothy 6:11). "Whoever pursues righteousness and kindness will find life and honor" (Proverbs 21:21). "The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but He loves the one who pursues righteousness" (Proverbs 15:9).
So keeping putting Your thoughts in my mind and Your desires in my heart, giving me the desire and the power to live my life pursuing Your heart and Your nature (Philippians 2:13). For that is the very purpose of every experience and encounter of my life in this little sliver of time and opportunity I have on this side of heaven, as You make me more like You each day (Romans 8:29). By the power of Your grace, may I "live for the rest of (my) earthly life no longer by human desires but by the will of God" (1 Peter 4:1-2). "For this is the will of God, (my) sanctification" (1 Thessalonians 4:3). "Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness on the day of judgment, because as He is, so are we in this world" (1 John 4:17). In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.