Rich Dwelling

Colossians 3: 16

Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you.

I would like to ask you to pause over these words today. For those who have been Christians for a long time and especially who have attended church for many years, the words of our faith become familiar. As such, they almost disappear. They become invisible in their familiarity. That was not the case for Paul’s audience. All he wrote was new and unfamiliar. This phrase must have sounded bizarre to them. What does it mean to have the word of Christ dwelling within us, much less richly dwelling within. What did Paul intend to convey.

Today I read some journaling I did with God on Isaiah 1: 19 (please see this entry at Though there are differences in the verses and the ideas contained within, there is a grand similarity. That is that there is something in us that is making alive all that we need to see manifested in the world around us. The living word is alive within us and that makes a difference in everything. The concept of the living word is, perhaps, a bit difficult to grasp. How can we embrace this truth so that it impacts our lives and the world around us?

We are walking, talking vessels of the Holy Spirit of God. Everywhere we go, so goes the Spirit. God’s design does not have His Word confined to the church building. It goes wherever we go. It is not the dead word but alive so it is best conveyed by a living vessel. Does this begin to sound like a heavy burden for us to bear? The wire that transmits electricity to your home conveys a lot of power but it does very little other than be available. The power is the electricity. The wire is to electricity what we are to the Holy Spirit.

There is something about God that I find truly astounding and consistent. His power does not degrade the wire but rather infuses it with life. God always accomplishes multiple blessings in one act. You have the ability to carry His light into every conference, meeting and encounter but at the same time, His power within you is blessing every cell of your being. He always blesses you first and then wishes to extend that blessing beyond all boundaries. He is the God of overflow so His plan is to overfill you so that the excess blesses all people around you.  Isn’t that astounding?

First, let us become internally aware. Become consciously attuned to the life of Christ within you. Sensitize your being so that you perceive the Lord’s tenderness within. I want you to think about the life of Christ within you so that you can experience the fullness of life in your own bones and spirit. Life should flow out from you but it should first begin in you. All that Christ is, all that he won for you is inside each one of us right now. That is a huge concept, one most of us have not yet fully embraced.

Take a moment to stop and think what this might mean in your life. I pray it blossoms into an expanding revelation of His glory within.


Isaiah 1: 19

“If you consent and obey, you will eat the best of the land.”

Pastor, this is one of the quickest ways to empty out the pews; talk about obedience. The very fastest is to teach on tithing, which I did yesterday. However, we must move into what I call “Grown-up Christianity” and I pray that all of the pastors who read today’s devotion are blessed with mature Christians who can hear the Word of God.

Look, there is good news attached to obedience. That is why Isaiah has sent us this word. We don’t have to cringe when we hear the word “obey” because there is blessing tied to it. Hooray! Now let’s just apply some simple logic to this. If I obey God; if I do what He instructs me to do, is it reasonable to expect that good things are going to happen for me? Well of course! Whenever we walk down the path He directs us to, it will always lead to provision and blessing. I have said this before but I imagine the old Pony Express in the American west. Those riders followed a prescribed path. Why? Their provision was there. They had the freedom to go any way they chose but the waystation with the food and fresh horse was on the suggested trail. That is what this passage means to me. When we consent and obey, when we do as the Father has instructed, then the natural consequence of that action is that we eat the best of the land. Isaiah is just trying to get us blessed. He is simply saying that if we will do what God has said, we will benefit.

Now, doesn’t that make obedience a bit more palatable?