In most societies, the goal for each individual to be a productive citizen. Work to make the society better. For those who deface property, not only is that act unproductive for society, but having a record can keep a person from having an opportunity to become a productive member of society.
And we each do the same thing.
Maybe we are not defacing physical property. But we deface ourselves and each other.
In ancient Jerusalem, defacing the temple of God earned a penalty of death. The temple is no longer here. Now you are the temple. Your brother is the temple. Do you not know that you are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? If anyone destroys God's temple, God will destroy him. For God's temple is holy, and you are that temple (1 Corinthians 3:16-17).
Be careful with yourself. Be careful with your brothers and sisters in Christ. We often look at the above passage in terms of our treatments of the physical body. Our health, our diet, etc. This passage is not simply referring to the physical self, but the whole self. Heart, soul, mind, etc.
Are you treating yourself and others well? Allow me to rephrase. Are you treating God's temple, yourself and other people well? Do you hold bitterness and forgiveness for yourself and others? For your own past mistakes and those of others? Do you love yourself and others well?
Jesus said that by loving each other well, people would know that you are his disciples (John 13:35). By loving each other well, others will see not you, but a temple of God. A reflection of Jesus himself.
How we treat ourselves and each other has a direct impact on our worship. In fact, Jesus clearly stated that if you are worshiping the Lord and you remember a conflict or issue with a brother, you need to go and be reconciled to that brother first. Then you can be free to come before the Lord (Matthew 5:23-24).
To worship is to be before God. It's to glorify him and give him recognition. That means seeing him. But he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen (1 John 4:20).
Let's not deface ourselves. Let's not deface each other. Let's allow ourselves the freedom to love ourselves. Let's love one another. Just as Jesus has loved us (John 13:34-35). Then we can truly be together for worship.
worship Him 24/7...