Find the church within you and let it out rather than finding the church without you and letting it in. For the church without is more concerned with itself than it is for you and has greater need to bind your freedom in order to preserve and nurture its own existence. But the church within is where God truly dwells and wishes to expand your freedom so that you may shine His unconditional love for all, including unto yourself, and by doing this bring the Kingdom of Heaven closer to Earth.
To find this church within we must recognize that our spirit is at one with God's spirit, and that His spirit is in each and every human heart. And by recognizing the truth of this knowledge, which is beyond the mind's method of understanding, we can manifest according to each of our own individual capabilities and talents. But without this knowledge we become prey to the confusion born of the mind's dilemma in comprehending its individual place and purpose in the universe, and fall into the abyss of chaos and fear that we ourselves have created.
After one has approached the altar of the spirit with conviction and has received the first revelation that God is within us all, the journey continues with each individual finding the divine in everything, from the earth beneath us to the sky above, within every plant and animal, and especially among our brothers and sisters. For just as Christ our brother loved us, so we must follow his example. And just as He and the Father are one, so are we at one with the Father through the spirit.
The next step is to disavow all those corruptible things, which chain us to the false one who, from the very beginning, encouraged our misunderstanding that the flesh can never be at one with the Father. And who also leads us to believe that because we have fallen, because we are alone and separate, the church within does not exist. Therefore, since it does not exist there is nothing to seek and nothing to do in life but indulge in those things that ultimately damage the mind, heart, and body. These things, these vices -sloth, greed, ignorance, and especially intolerance, the spawn of ignorance which too often results in acts of violence- chain us to a cycle of gloom that ultimately leads us both individually and collectively to a messy death. Pleasure is not the issue here. Truly He wants us to enjoy our lives because in doing so He enjoys His very existence. But when we lose Him in our sight, and harm this temple He has created within our heart, when we indulge in the false notion that we are all alone in this incarnation and have only the church without to intercede in our behalf, we sow the seeds of our own destruction and have no one to blame but ourselves. Then we come to realize that the evil one is just of our own making and by shedding these fetters that bind us to this evil thing that we have created, we develop the knowledge that moves us to a greater freedom which ignites the flame of love, and illumines the church within.
These are truly minor adjustments in our lives compared to the greater task of standing firm in our love against the adversity and persecution of those in fear whose desire it is to control our hearts and minds in order to secure their own misguided survival. But by remaining steadfast in the face of doubt and by persisting in our intent toward the divine purpose, we can enter and remain under the comforting dome of the church within and dwell there in safety from those who rail against our doors because we no longer accept the supremacy of their church without.
excerpted from Just Another River Tune by Michael Fike