Hoarding is a neurotic disorder. Some say a mental illness. The Hoarder surrounds herself with useless junk. To her it is neither useless or junk. She always has a reason for her mayhem. She sees it as her insurance policy against annihilation and loss. She sees it as her life. But how she defines her life stifles her spirit and suffocates her soul. Her person shrinks inside the jumble that is her house. Because she looks for life in measures that are not life she lives in a measure of death.
The hoarder is a parable of ourselves if we live in religion, suffocating the life that would be ours by incarnation, hoarding bits and pieces of religion in which we imagine there is life. Many Believers suffocate their life in Christ because they live from religion when they could be living un-encumbered, un-insulated and un-suffocated because they are in direct union with Jesus. Paul’s statements, ‘Christ in you’ and ‘Christ our life’ advertises direct union with God in God’s Son.
Our problem as humans is delusion. A common delusion is that we live in separation from God. For many their project of Christianity is overcoming a separation from God that no longer exists.*
IT IS FINISHED
Since the cross separation is over, we have been made one with God (and ourselves) and our being is interwoven with God’s being. This is the incarnation.
If there is a key scripture that summarises our inheritance in God it is this: ‘On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20.
We are all heirs in principle of this interwoven state of being. But heirs in actuality – or as Jesus called it – spirit and in truth when we realize it and live in it.
Should we be living in the illusion of separation, because we have been taught separation, we will be doing our best to make ourselves acceptable to God by good works. By refraining from bad deeds and by seeking right belief. Or the more subtle work of ‘keeping close to Jesus.’
Too few know that we are already one with God. That intimacy with God is not a thing we must earn. We have it now and are invited to live our life from this fellowship. Christ our life is the un-encumbered non-religious life, which can seem threatening to the hoarder of religion and inherited ideas. It is our already possessed union with God that makes us good people.
Most Believers have not been specifically taught separation. It is subtlety assumed. Imagined because so many live in a Christianised version of the knowledge of good and evil – which is to say, doing good and abstaining from evil with Jesus’ help. Sadly, much Christianity is a subtle Arminianism in which the Believers sets himself the task of earning salvation and earning Christ.
HOLY AS GOD IS HOLY
A whole and holy life does have merit. But this is the result of Christ our life; the effect of Jesus manifesting in our being. This oneness with God is always yours despite your progress, backflips and ‘crash and burns.’
Jesus loves you as you are. Not as you should be. This is the means and guarantee of holiness.
HOARDING BE GONE
Your fellowship with God depends on Jesus fellowship with God. Not on the degree of your improvement. In any case this is the wrong focus since the focus is you. Live from the life of Jesus and you are graced with all that is His. This His righteousness and His fellowship with our Father and Holy Spirit. Live in this and you will not need to rely on hoarding rubbish.
JESUS AND THE GIFTS
Firstly, Jesus is the Gift. Someone asked me once whether Jesus would have increased his oneness with God by speaking in tongues. Jesus was never separated from His Father in the slightest degree. (Not even when He cried out on the cross. Father doesn’t abandon people in their extremity.) ‘God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself.’ In any case Jesus was and is one substance with Father.
UNION IS YOURS
Jesus did not need to speak in tongues or adopt any aid to enhance union with His Father. Union was His life. He, Father and Holy Spirit were one. Jesus was God just as Father is God. This was the source of His being and the expression of His real self. Today this is the source and expression of your true self. The trinity has come in your flesh just as God in fullness lived in Jesus. We are sons because we are part of our Father as is the manner of all daughters and sons.
COME HOLY SPIRIT
The use of the words, ‘Come Holy Spirit’ has merit if Holy Spirit has never been part of our lives. And as a sign of courtesy in ministry when we are invoking Spirit’s authority. But not if we are living in the reality of the fullness of our new covenant inheritance. Holy Spirit is in you because the trinity is in you.
The God-Head lives in all who believe just as the fullness of God lived in Jesus. The great truth of the new testament age is the incarnation and the engine of new creation life is you and I as the manifestation of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Healing of limbs is good but the healing of separation between ourselves and God is better.
Nevertheless many Believers live in an illusion of separation, having not comprehended the at-one-ment or the incarnation and inter-weaving of God with His daughters and sons. This does not have to be. As Jesus said, ‘Only Believe!’ Why? We create the reality we live in out of our beliefs. Richard Rohr writes,
“The vast majority of Christians have not been able to overcome the gap between Divine Personhood and human personhood. It largely became a matter of trying to overcome it by a magical notion of sacraments if you were Catholic or Orthodox, or a transactional notion of “strong belief” or moral behavior if you were Protestant. But in either case, there was no inherent capacity for divine union that could be evoked and built upon in our very soul. Thus, it was consistently a very unstable core for most Christians, often degenerated into a kind of make-believe, if we’re honest.” (1) We are one with God because Christ lives in us.
‘On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you’ John 14.20. This is the day we are born out of religion into union with God.
Our life in Christ is a full life when it is the communion of the people in the communion of the trinity. An incarnated church life – call it religion if you like - is the church Jesus builds without human hands. It’s the communion of those for whom Christ and not religion is their life. Live in religion and we will never move beyond externalities. Live from the law and community will be words more than reality. Agree that Christ is our life and we will be alive in every element of our living.
Life together in Christ our life is never junk when it is ours because we have possessed it. This is the kind of life we do not hoard because we cannot help but give it away.
TRINITY IN YOU
Three persons, one God is the fullness of reality and your companionship with heaven. There is no gap between you and God that we can lessen by Bible study, good works, sacramental observances or church-going. Christ is the reality of your oneness with God. Believe this and live it.
The trinity lives in you. Agree with this Presence. Welcome them. Live in them. Take the fullness of God where ever you go. Be intentional about it and be filled with the joy of living! Rejoice that God is one and three. You have a constant set of companions. Your experience each day does not have to be ‘make believe.’ Acquiring a grasp of what Father achieved for us through the cross, resurrection, Pentecost and incarnation will furnish us with not only truth to live by but the glory of being lived in by the Truth and the Life.
* * The anointing and the gifts do not remove separation from God. The cross and the atonement removes separation from God. Living from the law creates a mindset of separation from God that is a lie. (1) Rohr, Richard. The Divine Dance: The Trinity and your transformation (Kindle Locations 1245-1250). SPCK. Kindle Edition.