I sometimes take it for granted – the fact that God wants to dwell in me. But when I stop to think about it, I am in awe. How can that be?
Even more moving is the fact that He wants to build a glorious structure inside us, if we only invite Him. Sukkot – the Feast of Booths (wrongly called “the Feast of Tabernacles”) serves as a great reminder. Though we are temporary in this world, wondering in the desert of life etc., He always provides a covering. And in the midst of our funny, childish, at times pathetic attempts to build something beautiful that can last about a week (or until rain showers on us), He shows up in His glory.
I had to post these! Some extremely decorative decoration of Sukkahs (booths)
“Tabernacling”, Not “Dwelling”, “Live Among You” or “Abide”
I love finding parallels between Moses’ Tabernacle and the way God dwells in us. In Hebrew, “to dwell” means “to tabernacle” (Ps. 84:1; Zec. 2:10-11 and many more references). The root is one and the same.
What did the Israelites build the Tabernacle from? They used the only building material that were available around – acacia wood. Acacia wood is not like the cedar trees that were used later to build the temple (1 Kings 5:10). Cedar trees are a carpenter’s dream material. They are tall, straight, easy to work with. But they have to be imported. Acacia, on the other hand, is every carpenter’s nightmare. It is thin, twisted and thorny. But that was what the desert had to offer.
How very typical of God: to take the thorns and the twisted, crumpled areas of our lives, and use them to build a vessel that contains His glory. We usually are ashamed of these thorny parts. We would rather everyone saw our cedar trees. But God is determined to use the thorns and thistles. For where we are weak, that is exactly where His strength is revealed.
How can one turn thorns and thistles into a vessel full of glory? It’s a fascinating and marvelous process, that requires a yearning desire to see His glory conquer every defiled part or area of our lives.
I would like to take this opportunity to invite you to our next Tabernacle Seminar, that will take place on January 2019. Read here Tabernacle Seminar – Brochure for more info.
As the nations come up to Jerusalem to celebrate the feast, quite a few conferences are being held around the country. One of them is by the founder of the Christian Embassy – Jan Willem Van Der Hoeven. They invited me to build the pieces of the Tabernacle and teach their guests about the inward process that needs to take place in each one of us. I will be doing it tomorrow evening, at Mt. Zion hotel. This is a very short notice, I know, but if you happen to be in the land and you have a free evening, you are most welcome to join us. Email me for more info.
One more thing I want to recruit prayer for is a Sukkot party we are giving our holocaust survivors. Also tomorrow, around noon. We’ll serve a delicious lunch in our congregation, and than take them two floors down, where they will go through some form of creative therapy, connecting to this season of High Holidays. You can read more about this ministry at http://kehilat-hamaayan.org.il/the-woodhouse-1-1-1-1-1-1-1/
Will you please pray for these precious souls? First of all, that they will arrive tomorrow. Almost half of them are not sure they can make it. Remember also K’, the lady who owns this studio, for wisdom and anointing, and the ability to touch a deep place in their hearts through this creative experience.
Thank you also for lifting me up. I owe you an update about Armenia and a couple of more posts to finish the “Back to BehLehem” series. Working on it!
I am also seeking God for His will concerning the upcoming year. There are so many things I can do, I can have my hands full. The question is what does He want me to focus on this time.