“So Solomon finished the Temple of the Lord, as well as the royal palace. He completed everything he had planned to do in the construction of the Temple and the palace. Then one night the Lord appeared to Solomon and said,


‘I have heard your prayer and have chosen this Temple as the place for making sacrifices. At times I might shut up the heavens so that no rain falls, or command grasshoppers to devour your crops, or send plagues among you. Then if my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land. My eyes will be open and my ears attentive to every prayer made in this place. For I have chosen this Temple and set it apart to be holy—a place where my name will be honored forever. I will always watch over it, for it is dear to my heart’.” 2 Chronicles 7:11-16 (NLT)


After Solomon dedicated the Temple with the people of Israel, there was a great celebration. The people honored God with burnt offerings, as was their custom. After years of working on constructing the Temple, the completion was a celebration that honored God. After it had concluded, God came to Solomon with a specific word. While God could have promised long-term deliverance from their enemies or food forever, He gave Solomon a specific promise that would be farther reaching than any of those specific provisions. God’s commitment was to be open and attentive to the prayers of the people. Solomon’s act of dedicating the Temple to God resulted in God responding with a promise. When the people would turn away, God’s promise for forgiveness would be the gateway for the Israelites to turn their hearts and prayers back to God.


There was something significant about God’s presence resting on the Temple. Yet, in our lives, the place where God dwells does not have to be limited to a church building. Because of the new covenant through Jesus, God’s Spirit dwells within us. God’s promise to Solomon is realized in each one of our lives as we continually look to God through prayer. 1 Corinthians 3:16 (NLT) says, “Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you?” We carry God’s presence with us into our workplaces, communities, churches, and even our homes. Although not a church building, one of the places that we spend so much time is in our homes. It can be easy to walk in and out without ever giving thought to whether or not God’s presence is dwelling there. Yes, He is dwelling in us, but have we made space for Him in our everyday activities? In the Old Testament, there were specific times where the people consecrated places unto the Lord. We need to take the ordinary spaces in our lives and intentionally consecrate them to the Lord. When prayers are offered up in the hallways and rooms of our homes, it changes the environment, the people, and the outcomes of our lives. It changes your spouse and your children, and extends to guests and friends who walk through your door. As we take ownership of the space God has entrusted to us, we have the opportunity to give it back to the Lord. As our homes and lives are characterized by prayer, we step into the promise that God’s eyes and ears are attentive to our prayers, while holding them dear to His heart.


Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.


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About Hona Amer

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