“Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.” — John 7:38
Is it Secret … Is it Safe?, by Randall D. Kittle

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As I was praying, I saw a scene from the classic book Lord of the Rings. In it, the tall, bearded Gandalf the Grey quickly enters the house of the small hobbit Frodo Baggins. He appears out of breath and disheveled from his efforts to arrive in such a hurry. Then, with a grave look upon his face and an urgent tone in his voice, he looks Frodo in the eye and asks, “Is it secret? Is it safe?” The pressing question upon Gandalf’s heart was whether the “ring of power,” which his uncle Biblo had entrusted to Frodo, was still safely in his possession.

I believe our loving, heavenly Father is asking the same question of each of us in these days: “Has the Ring of Power been kept secret and safe in our lives? Is it still our treasured possession?” But, what is this “Ring of Power” the Lord so urgently wants you and me to make certain is safe?

Throughout its pages, the Bible teaches that we are the betrothed bride of Christ. As such, God has given us an engagement ring as evidence of our engagement. Ephesians 1:13–14 tells us
“Having believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession.” The Greek word used here for “deposit guaranteeing” is “arrabone,” which is the Modern Greek word for “engagement ring.” We are engaged to Jesus Christ, and to seal His promise that we will be part of the wedding feast of the Lamb at the end of the age we have been given the presence of the Holy Spirit as the engagement ring of God. The Holy Spirit’s presence in our lives lets all heaven and earth know that we are the Lord’s betrothed bride.

This “Engagement Ring of God” does not merely garner attention like a dazzling diamond. It changes lives with its fiery “dunamis” power. Certainly there could never be a more potent “ring of power” in real life or imagined literature than the Engagement Ring of God — the presence of the Holy Spirit displayed in our lives through His “dunamis” power.

Since you and I have been given such a precious gift, it is essential that we both esteem it and care for it. When God asks us if we are keeping it “secret,” He is asking if we are spending time in the “secret place” with God. Any fiancé who fails to continue to pursue her betrothed after the engagement will find his heart saddened and his hopes diminished … and it is the same with our Lord. The Bible warns us
“Don’t quench the Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 5:19). To quench a fire is to cause it to be extinguished or allow it, by neglect, to become diminished. We quench the Holy Spirit when we fail to pursue our relationship with God. Are we spending time personally in private worship and prayer just being with the Lord our beloved Bridegroom?

When God tells us to make certain the ring is “safe,” He is exhorting us to be sure we are not allowing anything to remain in our lives that might grieve the Holy Spirit.
“And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice” (Ephesians 4:30–31). We need to remove anything and everything that stands in the way of a close, intimate, personal relationship with the Lord. This goes beyond just being obedient to the commands of God to the place of abandoned surrender to His every desire, longing for nothing less than unhindered, intimate relationship with the Lord.

Let us answer the call to keep a longing heart fixed on the Lord first and foremost, never neglecting the One who has captured our hearts with His love. Let us guard this relationship by casting aside any encumbrance that would hinder our relationship with our loving Bridegroom. Let me ask you this day, “Is it secret … is it safe?”


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