Sunday, April 29, 2007

Being made holy

This morning at church the theme that threaded through our worship service was God's holiness. His perfection and righteousness. And about how we are made righteousness in God's sight by Christ's sacrifice. And while we were singing I couldn't help but think of Hebrews 12:11--

"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it." And skipping to verse 14-- "Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord."

Discipline is never pleasant, no matter how you couch it. Whether it's coming from God, or some person you love, or someone you have to work at loving. But one thing we can be assured of--if God is disciplining us, it's always rooted in love. Always. And I don't know about you, but I want God to produce a harvest of righteousness and peace in my life.

But wait...there's a catch! The Word says I have to be trained by discipline. And remember, no discipline seems pleasant at the time, right? So let's see... If I have to be made holy in order to "see" the Lord (which I long to be and do), and if discipline is a tool that God uses to produce a harvest of righteousness and peace in my life (which I sorely desire that harvest), then I need to change my perspective about "discipline".

I'm not saying that every "bad thing" in my life has been sent by God. But I am learning that everything good and bad thing in my life has been "allowed" to be there by God. Nothing happens to me that doesn't first filter through the loving hands of my Heavenly Father. Nothing--as painful and as hard as that may seem at times. And it sometimes does seem that way to me.

One last thought that finds its root in Hebrews 10:9, 10 --
Then he (Jesus) said, "Here I am, I have come to do your will." He sets aside the first (covenant, the Old Testament) to establish the second (covenant, the New Testament). And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

We "have been made holy" through the body of Christ. Have been. Not going to be, but have been. A holiness is granted to us when we take on Christ. We haven't earned it, we don't deserve it, but nevertheless the God of heaven reaches down and by his mercy, he makes us holy. He gives us a bit of himself inspite of who we are. Amazing...

But then of course, there's still the unpleasant discipline factor. But you know, having already been made holy by Christ, having been given such a gift, the discipline I undergo here takes on a different hue. I look at it as gaining more of the likeness of Christ. Less of me, more of him. Is the discipline still painful? Sure. Would I perfer to avoid it at times? You bet.

But what it's doing within me--in the eternal perspective--is worth every tear, every pain, every bit of unpleasantness.

Happy Lord's Day,



  1. I have your blog featured on my blog page now! I am so glad that you have started to blog! Now that you are leaving, I can still pop on and see how you are doing! Yeah! Love you...and love the blog!
    Sista Suzi

  2. Hey Suzi, I'm glad we'll have this connection too! And it was great to sing with you this past Sunday! I'll miss that!


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