And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. (Rom 5:3-6)

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. (Psalm 69:6)

Saturday, December 31, 2011

My One Resolution for 2012: Holiness

As I have spent the last several weeks ruminating about the
accomplishments, the position, and future of my life. After some 40+ years,
like many men, I forecast and speculate that I have much to answer to God
for. Many men of my age hit a mid life
crisis and play the “Woulda, Shouldda, Coulda game”. This is that depressing period of life where
they look back at the glory days of high school and wonder “Why did I not
conquer the world, achieve my dreams, or stand above all others”? It is a terrible bog to wallow in.

Personally, I find myself thinking about standing before God
is judgment, wondering what I have to show for my Christian walk. I have missed so many opportunities. I have read countless books and failed to
heed the warnings within. Though I have
grown and have had some great highlights, I am starving for more of God and
want to gain many more wins in my struggle against all forms of worldliness
(read that sin). So over the last
several weeks I have been seeking God for a definitive direction. I believe
that God has clearly provided me with a compass through the scriptures.

The answer to all my dilemmas is the pursuit of
holiness. Consider it a personal
striving for personal revival. I want
this. I want it greater than
anything. In reflecting over my life
from earliest memory to the finish line of life that I want to be able to
cross, Holiness is the key.

Therefore, I would like to share with you my reasoning for
why holiness will be my objective of 2012.
These are thoughts that are forming within me a renewed way of thinking
about life and the opportunities that God will allow this year.

Holiness is the only fitting response to trials. James and Colossians talk of working out and
being sanctified in trials. It adds much
to our lives by de-cluttering our thinking and our heart. Holiness is what causes us to count it all
joy when we face trials, for we are thankful for the perfection it moves us

In all things we are to glorify God. If God is not honored by the prayers of one
who cherishes his sin, then He is not honored by the acts or works of someone
who is not holy. (PS 66:18, Col 1:10, 3:17) Repentance and scripture application play a
huge role in the sanctification of the soul.

Worship requires a holy preparation. I have spent a lot of time considering the
tabernacle and the things that went into its daily service. This leaves me convicted that my worship
should be first met with preparation in a solemn way. I should never casually or flippantly regard
the name of God or my opportunities to meet with Him.

If I am holy I spend less time correcting the sins of others
and place that resource on my own sanctification. True, I am to be my brother’s keeper and to
shepherd the flock, but I must do so without any beams or planks in my eye to
help them remove their specks of sawdust.
Along those lines, If I am seeking to be holy myself, I am putting my
efforts into someone I can do something about rather than not. This should produce humility. It also causes me to experience the struggles
and exertion required to walk closer with God.
Therefore, I am better able to help others in this same pursuit without
dispensing pat “Sunday School” answers to problems like pray, repent, read your
bible, and go to church.

Holiness provides a distinction apart from the world. It causes us to abide in Christ and to
therefore be at peace and produce spiritual fruit. Being separate from the world is an act of
worship. It also fulfills the admonishment
to let our light shine before the world and do our good acts that they would
praise our Father.

Jesus said to be holy because He is holy. This alone is the foundational reason for a
child of God to seek holiness. Putting
to death sin is a grand honor unto God.
It is a choosing of all He is above all the temptations and offerings of
the world. (Lev 20:7, 1 Peter 1:16)

D. L. Moody once said “The world has yet to see what one man
completely sold out to God can be used for”.
And I wish to echo the truths of revivals of old, without holiness no
one will see the Lord.

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