Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Mezuzah's in your Life

The basic idea is pretty simple and has traces back to ancient Judaism. On a typical Jewish home you will find a metal or ceramic fixure fixed typically to the entry way of the front door called a Mezuzah. The Mezuzah is nothing more that a carrying case of a rolled up piece of paper with the passages of Deuteronomy 6:4-9, and 11:13-21, and on the back is written Shaddai (the name of God) written in Hebrew. The whole point of the Mezuzah was to fulfill the written command given to Moses by God for the Children of Israel which was an acknowledgement of the "wholeness" of God, followed up by the command to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength." And to inscribe this on your heart.

Then the passage gives this cool learning tool to remember what it is that we acknoweldge about God... it says to "Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates."

To put these foundational truths (i.e. the wholeness of God, and to love Him with all you are), somewhere in your life where there is high traffic in your life. The idea is that you see the Mezuzah, holding the foundational truths and your remember who God is, how much He loves and blesses you, and to Love Him with all of who you are.

The first-century Jewish historian Josephus wrote in his Antiquities, "The greatest benefits of God are to be written on the doors... in order that his benevolent providence may be made known everywhere."

According to Maimonides, the great 12th-century rabbi and philosopher, "By the commandment of the mezuzah, man is reminded of the unity of God and is aroused to the love of him."

The idea of Mezuzah your Life is to take the same principle and make Life Mezuzah's. To take "high traffic" areas in your life (the computer, your car, your bathroom mirror, etc) and make them your Mezuzah.

For example, I love the smell of baked bread. Its warm, refreshing, and inviting. In fact, when I smell it, I feel at home (even if I'm not at home!). Truth is, many realtors took advantage of the "aroma of bread" and strategically had bread baking in homes they were selling just to capture the sense of "at home" to potential home buyers. For me, I've Mezuzah'd the smell of bread. I've captured this smell and this sense into mind as a reminder of the person and work of Christ at the communion table. Everytime I smell bread (opening the bag when making a sandwich, or walking by Panera) I'm reminded of who God is, how much He loves me, and to love Him with all of who I am. I've Mezuzah'd the smell of bread.

Last Thursday I took the WestGate "Summit" group to the top of Highway 9 (and Skyline) and watched the Sun set over Santa Cruz. While the sun went down and the beauty of God's blessing on us (through his creation) was plainly evident for all to see... we had a Mezuzah moment. Everytime you see a sunset (which if you pay attention... it usually happens every day.. that's called "high traffic") you are reminded of who God is, how much He Loves and Blesses you, and that you give him all of who you are.
(an actual picture from our Mezuzah experience, taken by Danny Gaines)

Make Mezuzah's in your Life