As I write this, police in bullet-proof vests are patrolling my neighborhood in hopes of apprehending, taking into custody, and eventually (it must be presumed) putting in captivity a crime suspect. It is disturbing! If this man is eventually taken captive, it is captivity by his own choice. If we break the law, we choose to put ourselves in the position of being captive for the offense.
Breaking the legal law of the land is not unlike breaking other relational agreements- a covenant between two people. We make choices on how we live- to keep or break our relational ‘law’ or relationship agreements. In 1 Kings Chapter 8 we hear Solomon address the people in terms of our needing to have God restore us from our relational trespasses. We all fall short, and are in the captivity of our poor choices. But God offers restoration. And this restoration is available to us by God’s design. In Solomon’s day, it was his request that God do this in the temple which he built to God’s glory. Much later, Jesus tells us that he will build his temple among us- we are the temple, all of us as his body, the relational space and place within which grace and redemption can happen. When we are this body of Christ, we offer a relational space where people are set free by the spirit of Christ that is dwelling among us. God is so ready to make a home among us! His spirit is so able to be the healing and restoration! As I end this blog, the authorities are still chasing our suspect, and resolution does not seem close. But just as I pray for our officers, the suspect, and a safe resolution, I pray for God’s restoration of us all. It’s a process, and as God’s people, may we all see that we all play a role in God’s redemption coming into this world!