My Soul's Housekeeper
Let the Word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom... Col. 3.16
This simple phrase has been my portion for several days now. I've been contemplating the importance of the Word. I am impressed all over again with the simplicity, the integrity of His great counsel. A child can know and heed. One doesn't need a lengthy degree from seminary (although I am happy to know those who have said lengthy degrees) to read or hear a simple verse and discover the Holy Spirit within bringing it to life and teaching how to apply that Word. It is wondrous, it is simple, it is alive, and faith-filled!
The Greek word translated "dwell" in the verse above is:
enoikeo - to dwell, to dwell in and influence for good, to keep house
So there you have it. The Word - the precious Word of God - is to live in us. But more than that, it is to influence us for good. And beyond that, it is to keep our house. It is NOT to be our servant, but rather the overseer, the master "who has a right to prescribe to and direct all under his roof." (Matthew Henry Commentary)
The Word provides, as a good housekeeper will, meat in season, nourishing meals, grace as needed, cleansing for routine maintenance, and a regular reordering and tidying of our mind. But we must allow that. Hence Paul's exhortation at the opening of the sentence - Let. Let the Word of Christ dwell, let it influence for good, and let it keep your house.
It is popular to use scripture (or more correctly, to misuse scripture) for our own purpose, thinking it might well serve us and our desires. We look for comfort but not correction. We take the glad promise but reason away the harbinger of trouble. Uncomfortable passages are dismissed as cultural or irrelevant.
We are a bit spoiled and lazy, not having learned to eat our vegetables, for example. Instead we have grown up on fast food: immediate satisfaction and no green stuff to speak of (and don't give me that line about lettuce, or pickles being a vegetable, or ketchup being tomato.)
We have not learned to yield, to submit, to take commands, to be led. We have not learned to trust and obey.
Maybe we have not had good fathers. Perhaps authority figures have let us down. Abuse, apathy, and abandonment certainly take a toll. Sin is the great spoiler.
But these are not just any words of which I speak. These are the Words of our heavenly Father. This is Love itself. Jesus, the Lover of my soul, wants to teach, lead, and guide me for His glory and for my good. He is asking me to release the Holy Spirit to use His Words to bring abundant life to me. Many times it is delightful; He speaks words of comfort, joy, pleasure. But sometimes it is death; the Word challenges the very core of my belief, stripping away false hopes and vain dreams so that He can replace them with truth and possibility.
Whatever the meat for the season, whatever housecleaning is scheduled by that good and faithful housekeeper, there is always grace (divine enabling) to partake and do. We grow, we learn holy ways, and we experience great joy and abundant life. But it is a faith venture requiring a willing heart. Go to Him today and tell Him you are ready to let His Word dwell in you richly.