“Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God? You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
Welcome and Opening Prayer
Song #421, “Are You Washed In the Blood?”* The Salvation Army Song Book
Instructions for the Four Prayer Stations
Closing Thoughts “A Clean Temple” (Share when the women have reassembled.)
Closing Song, “Create in Me a Clean Heart” (Video with Words available on YouTube)
Time of Decision and Closing Prayer
Set–Up and Instructions
Set up the following prayer stations in the chapel or meeting room. Invite the women in small groups to visit the stations, allowing 20 to 25 minutes for each station. Place a facilitator at each station to lead the women through the various steps of worship. The suggested dialog is in bold text. Some groups may finish sooner than others. If so, ask them to return to the meeting room and sit quietly until all have returned.
Station One—Disinfect My Mind
Make a sign that says, “Disinfect my Mind … A Mind Full of Worry Can Leave You Tied Up In Knots.” Place a bottle of disinfectant on the table and 6-inch strands of yarn, twine or ribbon with a loose knot tied in the end. You will need enough strands for one per attendee. Make an additional sign with the following: “God’s Word has quite a bit to say about worry. Read the following verses and allow God to disinfect your mind from the things that worry you.” Have the following scriptures listed on cards that the women can take with them: Philippians 4:6-7; Proverbs 3:5-6; John 14:27; Psalm 55:22. Dialog: “Take one strand of yarn and untie the knot in it. As you untie the knot, ask God to take a major worry from your mind and heart. Ask Him to help you with it and trust that He will do so. Untying the knot is the symbol of letting go.”
Station Two—Purify My Heart
Make a sign that says “Purify My Heart.” Draw a heart on a large glass container with permanent marker or tape a paper heart to it. It should be small enough that you can still see the liquid when placed inside. Fill the container with water and bleach. (Experiment with the water/bleach solution, as the size of your container will determine how much bleach is necessary for the demonstration to be successful.) Fill a smaller glass container with water and dark food coloring. Make a sign with the following: “Confessing our sins is the first step in allowing God to purify our hearts.” Dialog: “If we have unconfessed sin, our hearts are divided and our relationship with God is hindered. Take a moment to search your heart and allow God to reveal any unconfessed sins in your life.” Take the container of dark liquid, representing sin, and pour a small amount into the water/bleach liquid, which represents God. Dialog: “Notice how the sin is cleansed from the heart because God is faithful and wants to forgiven our sins. Take a few moments to pray silently asking God to keep you sensitive to His Spirit so that your confession of sin will be quick and constant.”
Station Three—Cleanse My Words
Place two small bowls on the table, one containing sweet candy and the other sour candy. Identify each bowl. Make a sign for the table with the words “Cleanse My Words” at the top. Add the following text: “There are numerous verses in the Bible that talk about our speech or our tongues. We read in Ephesians 4:29: ‘Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.’” Dialog: Our words are powerful, either for good or evil. Eat a piece of bitter candy. While eating it, think over the past 24 to 48 hours and ask God to forgive you for any negative things you may have spoken. Now eat a piece of the sweet candy. Let the sweet taste overcome the sour, and ask God to help you be more encouraging in your speech.
Station Four—Sanitize My Hands
Have small hand sanitizer bottles in sufficient amount for each woman to have one. If this is too expensive, use a large bottle to share. Place a sign with the words, “Sanitize My Hands” at the top and underneath the following: “Our motivation for the works that we do is an important part of keeping our temple clean.” Dialog: We are good at doing many things, but sometimes we do them for the wrong reasons. In Colossians 3:23 we read, “Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.’” Use the sanitizer to cleanse your hands. As you do, ask God to reveal to you any selfish motives you have for the works you do for the church and for others. Confess to Him these motives and ask Him to help you in the future to do all works just for Him. Take a bottle of sanitizer to remind you of your prayer.
Closing Thoughts—A Clean Temple
Many of us grew up singing “O be careful little eyes what you see. For the Father up above is looking down in love.” I love that chorus and find it quite challenging to live out in my everyday life. It is a reminder that God knows all we do throughout our day. When we become children of God, we become His temple. First Corinthians 6:19-20, reminds us that we are His dwelling place. God can only dwell in a holy, clean temple. Today, as we went through our stations, we asked Him to disinfect, purify, cleanse and sanitize some important areas of our body, His temple.
As that children’s chorus said, there are even more areas we should consider: our eyes—what we watch and our feet, where we go. We should also consider our health; how we treat our bodies in the way we eat and exercise. Today may we be challenged to allow Him to deep clean our spiritual temples, just as we deep clean our homes during spring-cleaning. Cleaning our homes requires planning, persistence, power and follow through. Our spiritual spring–cleaning requires the same efforts.
Close with a decision time and prayer.