Ann's Corner

A taste of FAITH, a touch of LAUGHTER.

The Question of Holiness


The Sunday sermon was thought provoking. It was based on 1 Peter 3:8-18, and taking a look at holiness, what constitutes the holiness of God and how we are to live our lives in light of that.

We sang “We Fall Down”

~~~~~~~~~~~

 

“We Fall Down”

We fall down

We lay our crowns

At the feet of Jesus

The greatness of

Mercy and love

At the feet of Jesus

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

Is the lamb

We fall down

We lay our crowns

At the feet of Jesus

The greatness of

Mercy and love

At the feet of Jesus

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

We cry holy, holy, holy

Is the lamb



https://youtu.be/34yPZiD8OMs


 

~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

As we sang the chorus, I was struck afresh by the holiness of God, and my own obvious lack of it, and at the same time I thought how much we misunderstand His holiness, and ours as part of Him. HE is holy. That is what the song is about. HIS holiness. It’s why we lay down our own crowns. It’s not about US. It’s not about ME.

I pondered my own actions in what some might shake their heads, tut-tut, and call sin, because I had gone out on a limb, but I know the intentions of my heart in it all, and I was free in pure grace in it. There was a certain purity of motive and intent about it, as a result of seeking Him in it, and mainly because my all my thoughts and actions were laid bare before Him and, for the most part, as a result, were not totally selfish. It was mainly “otherly”. The concern for another outweighed my concern for myself.

I think God thinks about holiness a lot differently than we do. I like to think about the holiness of the ordinary. I feel that God imbues any simply pure and ordinary action with holiness, especially if it is done as “unto Him” and in purity of spirit and mind.

What I am personally thinking of is deeper than I am able to, or perhaps deeper than I want to, express here and now. Perhaps later….I have a LONG way to go!

However, this was my thought:

“Holiness is a matter of truth and intent, even in our imperfections.”

God understands……..

The fact that we are CALLED to be holy and the need for intentionality about the process of becoming holy was discussed.  The latter interested me. Intentionality. Something I’ve had some thoughts on over time.

Holiness necessitates change and is in that sense perhaps intentional in nature, but my feeling is that it should grow out of desire and choice, as a result of the innermost sanctifying work of the Spirit, not compulsion in the sense of guilt or the “shoulds” and “should nots” of religion. That kind of compulsion will never result in true holiness, but in a kind of “works” of self righteousness with an unavoidable shadow of hidden guilt. The spirit needs to be free before God.

The outcome of the ongoing work of the Spirit in our lives is the intention, the desire, to become more Christ-like, in spite of the failings of our humanity. It’s an effect of the indwelling Spirit, and as such, we can’t rightly lay claim to it. It’s God’s work in us as we yield to it.  That balance is what will keep us humble.

The sermon continued on to outline the “how” of holiness. How are we then to live our lives?

A book called Soul Keeping by John Ortberg, was mentioned and recommended for reading. I intend to take a look at that. I need to learn more about the soul, and the keeping of it, both mine and others. I’ve had some thoughts on it and written something about soul care and something I’ve called “soul speak” (in relationships) elsewhere.

1 Peter 3:8-18 gives us a good deal of information on the “how” of holiness. It’s quite the instruction manual. I believe the things mentioned will come about as a RESULT of this process of sanctification I mentioned earlier.

I am reminded of Ephesians 1 and how all those spiritual blessings in the heavenly places are designed to bring about holiness, that we might walk in it and come to be “to the praise of His glory”. That has been a long term subject of prayer for me over the years, despite my many failings.

Holiness will be God’s work in and through us. He is ABLE. He will DO it….it’s His intention and He is FAITHFUL.

Get ready for CHANGE!

 

AJ ❤

 

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This entry was posted on May 27, 2017 by in Blog, My Thoughts...., YouTube and tagged , , , .

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