Many faithful church goers would take it hard if you said that God was not to be found within the Church walls, after all that is what people go to Church for, to enjoy fellowship, to receive challenge and encouragement, but most of all to meet with God. I believe we do encounter God in worship in Churches, but the fatal flaw is believing that God lives there.
God cannot be confined by walls nor can he be contained by our particular theology. Sadly too often people make God fit their thinking when he is in fact a free Spirit, yes working in places we call Church buildings, but also moving all over his Church, regardless of walls, and moving all over the world, weaving wherever he wishes, working in unexpected places and in unexpected people. When God says he has been travelling around in a tent, he gives me the strong impression that he is a journeying God and he is on every journey with us.
Lord God, your love is so high we can’t get over it, so low we can’t get under it, so wide we can’t get round it. Your love cannot be confined in any sense, far less by walls, and we thank you for your free and mind-boggling love. Your Church is wherever your people are praising, where people are trying to live out and share your good news, where people love, where people forgive and are forgiven, where all are accepted. May we be counted part of your Church. And whenever we are tempted to build walls, remind us that a tent will suffice. Amen.
6 From the time I rescued the people of Israel from Egypt until now, I have never lived in a temple; I have traveled around living in a tent.