August 13 – Cleaning Out the Clutter

Read: John 2:13–22

In the temple Jesus found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. John 2:14

When Jesus went up to the temple in Jerusalem, He was angered by what He saw. Merchants were selling doves, sheep, and cattle in the portico of the temple. Money changers were changing currency. The temple, the most holy place in all Judaism, the earthly home of God, had become cluttered. The entrenched buying and selling, the commerce and commercialism, and the corruption and the disorder of the temple had made it nearly impossible for the people to the divine presence. Jesus decided it was time to take action. He made a whip of cords and began driving the merchants, the livestock, and the money changers out of the temple.

Like the temple in Jesus’ day, our lives get so cluttered that we cannot feel the Spirit of the living God moving within us. The concerns, frustrations, and anxieties within us obscure our view of God. The hustle and bustle of our busy lives drowns out the still small voice of God, who is trying to get our attention. We assume God has gone silent or that God is dead or that God has gone on vacation when the truth is that we are the ones who are lost. There comes a time when we have to whip our lives back into shape. There comes a time when we need to clean out the clutter in our lives because it is getting in the way of God’s purpose for us. There is a time when we finally have to get serious about our faith. Jesus took bold action in the temple—our actions need to be equally bold if we are to reclaim a sense of God’s sacred presence in our lives.

What are some things that clutter your life and prevent you from being moved by the Spirit of God?

Lord, my life is cluttered with so many things. Anger, frustration, resentment, pride, envy—all these things choke out Your Spirit within me. Help me to cleanse the temple within. Bring order to my life. Help me to clean out some of the clutter so that I am able to see and hear and feel Your holy guidance in my life. In Jesusname, I pray. AMEN.

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