Holiness Hurts. It’s not always “fun” be a Christ…

Holiness Hurts.

It’s not always “fun” be a Christian. Contrary to many popular beliefs, it’s actually not supposed to be that way. Christianity is supposed to be about holiness and God’s glory, not comfort zones and our happiness. True happiness is found in selflessness and hungering for and being filled by the Almighty. But here’s the thing – we aren’t born thinking of others. We don’t innately desire to be holy. We are born selfish and innately desiring evil. So the breaking/crucifying/dying of our flesh doesn’t happen with ease.

We hold on to our own desires and long for what will gratify ourselves. It’s easier that way. Perhaps you have battled staying like the world because what would happen if people knew we were different?! And of course there is the challenge of letting go things we love. People, places and things. Changing the “way we’ve always done it.”

But then it finally hits us. We don’t care what it takes – we want to live a life that will glorify God. We realize that the Kingdom of God is really coming. The King of the Kingdom died instead of me. The Creator has put together a plan to save me from death. We have sinned and deserve death. The wrath and suffering that fell on Jesus should have fallen on us.

And then there is a shift that begins. The realization that we want to serve God more than ourselves. We want to love God more than ourselves. We want to dwell with God more than the world. Suddenly, we realize we need God, we want Him. A passion begins to burn. This burning in our hearts is finally hot enough to burn off the evil and sin that still remains in our hearts. We are finally willing to sacrifice, regardless of the cost.

Once this happens, we need to seek the LORD on this matter. We need to ask Him to reveal to us practical steps that we need to take to grow in holiness. This is the first step actually. Slowing down enough to stop and pray…

“Heavenly Father, you alone are wise. You are the great God of heaven. You created all things and know my frame especially. You know my thoughts, you know my heart. More than I do even. I come to you now and ask you to reveal to me what it is I need to do be holy. What is it that you would have me start, stop, change, continue, do less, do more, whatever it might be, Father. Please speak to me and show me clearly what it is that I need to do to be more like you. Please God. Help me. I can’t do this on my own.”

And then just wait…..be quiet. Let the LORD do His work.

Write down a list of what the LORD puts on your heart. If you are like me you need to make provisions for the spirit almost in the same way we need to not make provisions for the flesh. Maybe it’s not going to sleep until you have prayed or not eating breakfast until you’ve read your Bible. It might be different steps for each of us, but we can not forget that the goal is God’s glorification through our holy lives.

Without a doubt, it is God’s will for us to be holy (I Peter 1:13-16). Knowing this, we can be confident that God will show you what it is you need to do to be holy. He will show us because we aren’t His without holiness. When we continue to cling to the world we are still part of the world.

II Corinthians 6:14-7:1 – Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I WILL DWELL IN THEM AND WALK AMONG THEM; AND I WILL BE THEIR GOD, AND THEY SHALL BE MY PEOPLE. Therefore, COME OUT FROM THEIR MIDST AND BE SEPARATE,” says the Lord. “AND DO NOT TOUCH WHAT IS UNCLEAN; And I will welcome you. And I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me,” Says the Lord Almighty. Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the
fear of God.

It isn’t going to be fun at first, but it will be right. You aren’t going to be popular among your friends, but you will be apart of a new family. Holiness hurts at first, but then it all makes sense:

Hebrews 12:14 – Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord.

Matthew 5:8 (HCSB) – Blessed are the pure in heart, because they will see God.

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2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Jessica on December 2, 2006 at 2:32 pm

    Yes Yes!!! It hurts alright, it hurts God to see us continue in these ways of the world and to deciectfully call ourselves followers of Christ. Oh the sickening stench that God must endure until He can destroy it all in the end. “Lord teach me to live on the narrow righteous path that I may some day enter into that narrow righteous gate.” Holiness hurts us and Unholiness hurts God, let me choose this day who I hurt!!!

    Reply

  2. Posted by JohnO on December 2, 2006 at 3:06 pm

    Jessica, great to see you comment. You’re absolutely right, we need to have wholehearted repentance in front of our God.

    Reply

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