‘The Lord said to Moses: “Tell your brother Aaron that he is not to come whenever he chooses into the Most Holy Place behind the curtain in front of the atonement cover on the ark, or else he will die.” Leviticus 16.2
This is amazing! Aaron could not go directly into the presence of God whenever he wished as to do so would have killed him. He was kept out of the presence of God for his own protection. This gives us some indication of just how powerful and real God’s presence was. Yet we are invited to stand in this same presence whenever we choose. How lightly we take it!
If Aaron had been afforded this same privilege as us he would probably have treated it with huge awe and respect, probably gasping at the privilege offered to him. There is an old saying that ‘familiarity breeds contempt’, and the very availability of God’s presence can cause us to treat it lightly. We can so easily become accustomed to hearing the great truths - like Jesus’ promise to be with us always and the assurance that we are living temples of his Holy Spirit who dwells within us - yet lose our sense of amazement and wonder at the enormity of what has been given to us.
If God chose to live in each of us for only one day a year, we would take that day very seriously. How much more seriously should we take the fact that he chooses to dwell within us every day of the year? Take a moment to reflect on the wonder of his presence within you; give thanks for it and walk in it.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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