March 23, 2005
Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts, as in your ignorance; but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, because it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”
1 Peter 1:13-16
Do you remember the days before you accepted Christ—the emptiness you felt in spite of your success and the smile on your face? You knew you needed something more in your life…and then you heard the good news of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit pricked your heart, and you, in turn, trusted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior.
It felt good, didn’t it? Knowing that there wasn’t something missing anymore and now your life was inhabited by the presence of Jesus Christ. And you were probably so excited about your faith that you determined to live for Him always.
Yet for some, there was a cooling down period after the flame. Some of you may have been confronted with your friends after the fact saying, “Hey, come out with us and have a beer.” You declined their offer because of your newfound salvation. But, they began to tease you about becoming a religious fanatic or a holier-than-thou Jesus freak.
The last thing you wanted to do was to be considered that and leave the wrong impression. So, you began to back off in order to blend in, and maybe even began to compromise a little bit here and there. Before you knew it, you were getting sucked back into the same powerful temptations from before. The Word of God was being choked out of your life, and your Christian walk became a stumble through life.
What happened? Did it happen when you decided one day that it was more important to mow the lawn on Sunday than to worship with people of God? Or maybe it was when you started drinking again? Perhaps it could’ve been when you decided to get a divorce because there were irreconcilable differences, or so you claim? Was it when you started noticing and fantasizing about the co-worker in your office?
For most people, it’s not an explosion, but a slow leak that keeps them from following through and growing up in the Christian life. And for some of you that same old miserable empty feeling has returned. And then there are others, while still active in church and service to the Lord, you find yourself stepping over the line more than you should and giving in mentally, at first, to those temptations.
God has called every one of us to holiness in Him. If you are a Christian, you’ve been set apart. You belong to Jesus and you are to be different, unique, and separate unto Him. That’s what holiness is. Today, seek holiness by living as Christ would and in obedience to the Father.
CHRIST WANTS TO TRANSFORM AND CONFORM YOUR
CHARACTER TO MATCH HIS.