The Feast of Sukkot is special to me in a very personal way, and I hope after reading this blog it will have new meaning for you as well. There are many powerful themes associated with Sukkot, but the one that resonates with me the most is that of God’s passionate desire to dwell with me 24/7, not as a distant, impersonal, critical, judgmental or unpredictable God, but in a very intimate, personal, unconditionally loving, and unchanging relationship — and He desires to dwell that way with you too!
He has demonstrated this intense desire since back in the garden where He walked with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day (Gen 3:8). God dwelled among the Israelites after freeing them from Egypt. I am the Lord their God, who brought them out of Egypt so that I might dwell among them (Ex. 29:46). The sukkahs of Sukkot are a picture of His protection and provision of their every need in the wilderness. Their clothes did not wear out and their feet did not swell during those forty years (Deut 8:4)!
The very first commandment God gave to His people after they received the Law at Mt. Sinai was to “make Him a sanctuary (and later Solomon’s Temple) that He may dwell among them.” (Ex 25:8). His heart has always been to make a way for us to dwell with Him in the midst of His holiness, in spite of our sin and imperfections.
In the future, His manifest presence will dwell with us in the Millennial Temple in Jerusalem when Yeshua returns to set up His Millennial Kingdom where we will rule and reign with Him! On that day, His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem…and the Lord will be king over all the earth (Zech 14:4,9). I truly cannot wait for that day!!
Now you may still be wondering why this particular theme of Sukkot is so especially meaningful and healing to me. It is because perhaps like many of you, the messages that I received growing up were completely the opposite. I believed that I was unwanted, that no one wanted to be with me. At the tail end of seven children who were much older than me, and with parents who were burnt out and tired from raising a large family and dealing with all of my siblings’ problems, I believed I was just a bother or a nuisance. I spent the majority of my time alone, and I felt that I was on my own.
Now your situation may have been completely different from mine, but I know if you live on this earth, at some time or another you have experienced feelings of being rejected, alone, unwanted or felt you had to perform to be accepted. Be it in personal relationships with family, spouses, or dating, at churches/congregations, or even in business relationships with bosses, co-workers, clients and customers.
Thankfully, I have experienced great healing from these old messages through the powerful “new” messages and concrete visuals of Sukkot. I pray they are a source of healing for your heart as well. The sukkah reminds me of God’s constant and all-encompassing provision, protection and presence. I am never alone and I am never on my own to deal with life’s problems, challenges, and fears. The Millennial Temple, where His manifest presence will dwell with us in the future, gives me hope, excitement, and a focal point in the midst of so much turmoil, evil and uncertainty in the world today. They both bring assurance, comfort, and security that frees me from fear and the insecurity of being alone, unprotected, unwanted or rejected.
Now the enemy is working relentlessly to get us to believe that God is not always with us, that He won’t protect us and provide for us. For example, recently I realized I was believing that God disappears from the scene and lets evil rule in the end times, causing me much fear and dread! Fear is not from God, it’s from the enemy! And so are lies that tell you that God is “always” with you — that is until you mess up or are not perfect, that you can’t depend on Him to always be there — sometimes He’s there and sometimes He’s not, that He is watching from afar but is not interested in the mundane details of your life, or that He’s busy with more important people and things!
Those are lies straight from the pit! I believe that if you are not experiencing intimacy with God or feel He is not always with you, it is not because God has gone somewhere! He never changes! It is because you are allowing something to block that intimacy. It might be lies that you believe about yourself, lies that you believe about God, sin, or negative emotions such as fear/stress, unforgiveness, doubt, unbelief, bitterness, resentment, self-condemnation, perfectionism, performance, etc.
The depth of intimacy you have in your relationship with God is up to YOU, not Him! It’s already a given that His heart’s desire is to dwell with you and to communicate with you 24/7 of each day, and that NEVER changes! You have to take responsibility to deal with whatever blocks that intimacy. Use the weapons of warfare that He’s given you to break free of these things that block you from experiencing His presence and receiving His love and truth! Then when the messages of Sukkot penetrate your heart, you will have a deep sense of knowing you are wanted, accepted, valued, secure, provided for, and protected.
Especially now, in these ever-changing, tumultuous times, find your security in an intimate relationship with the Lord. It’s the only thing that can never change or be taken away from you. Rest secure that He desires to dwell intimately with you 24/7 now and forever. Let the sukkahs of the past and the Millennial Temple of the future give you concrete, visual pictures of that security now, and assurance of it in the future.
Many of the past temple traditions at Sukkot pointed to that day when the Messiah’s Millennial kingdom would be established, and the earth would be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea (Is. 11:9). No matter what is happening in your world today, rejoice this Sukkot as you look forward to that day!