God shares the deepest thought of His heart with us throughout the Bible. That thought? ‘I want to make a home with my people.’ It’s been His desire from eternity past and He makes it clear from the start to the finish of His revelation to us.
Think about all the ways He tells us His desire. It’s so common in the Bible that emotional absence is something that just can’t apply to God. He is so emotionally invested in us that He repeats Himself over and over. Here are just a few examples of His longing to be at home with us.
‘They heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day…then the LORD God called to the man, and said to him, ‘Where are you?’ Genesis 3:8-9
God showed His desire for fellowship from the start by coming to be with Adam and Eve in the garden. Then He often spoke to Moses about His love for His people Israel and His desire to live with them.
‘Let them construct a sanctuary for Me, that I may dwell among them.’ Exodus 25:8
‘I will dwell among the sons of Israel and will be their God. They shall know that I am the LORD their God who brought them out of the land of Egypt, that I might dwell among them; I am the LORD their God.’ Exodus 29:45-46
Then many years later He showed David the temple He desired to be built and then spoke to Solomon who would build it. In reference to that temple God said,
‘I will dwell among the sons of Israel, and will not forsake My people Israel.’ 1 Kings 6:13
Are you emotionally invested like God is? I used to be a disconnected man(you can learn more about that here), unable to intimately connect to God or even my wife. Living a life without intimate relationships keeps you from the true desire of God. His emotional, relational desire to be with us! God craves our fellowship. Hard to believe, isn’t it? I think it’s why He repeats it so many times!
Even after Israel had proven herself unfaithful time after time, God reminds her of His desire.
‘Sing for joy and be glad, O daughter of Zion; for behold I am coming and I will dwell in your midst,’ declares the LORD. ‘Many nations (that’s us, the non-Israelites) will join themselves to the LORD in that day and will become My people. Then I will dwell in your midst, and you will know that the LORD of hosts has sent Me to you.’ Zechariah 2:10 (see also chapter 8, verses 3 and 8)
He invites us to sing and be glad because His desire never changes. He wants to make His home with us. The New Testament continues the theme.
‘Jesus answered and said to him, ‘If anyone loves me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode (home, dwelling) with him.’ John 14:23
‘However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you…But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.’ Romans 8:9a, 11
‘Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?’ 1 Corinthians 3:16
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them, and he will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any morning, or crying, or pain; the former things have passed away.’ Revelation 21:3-4
What a promise! God sweeps away the past. Its’ hurts. Its’ miseries. The stain of sin and years of tears. Gone. So He can fulfill His eternal desire – to live with us in peace, harmony, and holiness. He completes His heart’s desire and then begins eternity with Him, in His home. Us to live with Him, forever!
These may be the most comforting words in the Bible because they speak of a time beyond our pain. But they are to be enjoyed now. Not just in theory but in reality. We can, right now, strive to make our home God’s home. We can work to bring peace and comfort and love into our hearts so our homes welcome all who seek Him.
Starting with you, how can you make your home a more desired place for your spouse? What attitudes are locked up in your heart that lockout your beloved? What actions slam the door to reconciliation? What sins are you giving harbor to that ruin the haven of your home? Will you turn them over to your loving God who longs to dwell with you and yours in your home?
O LORD, who may abide in Your tent (home, dwelling)? Who may dwell on Your holy hill? he who walks with integrity, and works righteousness, and speaks truth in his heart. he does not slander with his tongue, nor does evil to his neighbor’ Psalm 15:1-3