“…so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith…” (Ephesians 3:17)
Weird verse, right?
Doesn’t Jesus come to dwell in our hearts when we become Christians? Yes, he does. So what does it mean for Christ to dwell in us even more? Do we somehow get more and more of Jesus’ spirit in our hearts?
While studying this passage, I came across a helpful illustration from D.A. Carson. He used the analogy of purchasing a house. When Jen and I signed the paperwork to purchase our house, the house belonged to us. The realtor handed us the keys to the house. It was ours. We owned it.
But the inside of the house had some seriously rough spots. The bathroom was fully carpeted and didn’t have a shower. The kitchen had nasty, ancient carpet. The walls were all the same, boring, off white color.
So, we had the bathroom completely redone, with tile flooring and a new shower. We had the kitchen floor replaced with tile, and we gave all the walls a new coat of paint. Jen has been channeling her inner design star and has been hanging different photos and pieces of artwork on the walls.
The longer we’re in the house, the more the house reflects our character and personalities.
D.A. Carson says:
Make no mistake: when Christ first moves into our lives, he finds us in very bad repair. It takes a great deal of power to change us; and that is why Paul prays for power. He asks that God may so strengthen us by his power in our inner being that Christ may genuinely take up residence within us, transforming us into a house that pervasively reflects his own character. (A Call To Spiritual Reformation, pg. 187)
Let’s pray that Christ would dwell in us more and more, so that we are transformed into a house that pervasively reflects his own character.