Posts Tagged ‘holiness’

Good People are Sinners

Wednesday, March 8th, 2017

broken heart

I need help. I have a condition that cripples me from living the fullness of my life as God promises. It’s called human being thinking. Also known as worldly thinking.

What is human or worldly thinking? Well, in a nutshell…it’s believing that I’m the only person I need to worry about pleasing or satisfying. It’s thinking that I owe no one or thing any allegiance but my self.

The truth is, I’m not qualified to be my own God and Judge.

    My heart is wonky.

It’s dirty, full of sin and ready & willing to turn to whatever feels good instead of running hard & fast after what is Holy. One of the biggest lies we tell ourselves is that one about being a GOOD person.

I’m a good person … therefore, don’t judge my decisions or choices. They’re mine, butt out!

The problem with that is that a lot of good people end up in hell. Being “good” isn’t what offers you and me a place in eternity with God.

be holy

While I believe there are good people in the world, I know without a shadow of a doubt that not one of them is perfect or spotless in the eyes of God. It just isn’t possible. Only Jesus Christ has the ability to be that. We are liars, thieves, cheats and more. We trick ourselves by justifying the sin in our lives and that’s where we get the uncanny ability to overlook faults or weaknesses that make us everything we never want to be (or to be called), wrong.

Look, sin is a human condition. Not one person gets to walk through this world without falling into its hole. We are all sinners. You, me, your grandma, your pastor, your best friends’ Sunday school teacher….. every. single. person. sins.

The problem we have isn’t just admitting it. It’s admitting it and believing we need a Holy God to forgive us. To repent and or change.

be holy 1

Which brings me back to thinking like a human being. There are times when my head wants to gloss over what I know is wrong in my life. I can make whatever is ugly look and feel really lovely if I work at it long enough. Except, the Holy Spirit never lets me enjoy it truly because it’s genuinely gross and disgusting. It doesn’t belong where I’m trying to force it to be.

During this season of Lent, I decided (secretly, between God & Me) to give up something that was literally owning me. It’s not something that others would find bad or unhealthy…but it’s something that I know God doesn’t want for me. When I decided to remove it from my life, I was driving down the road in my car when a simple thought came to my mind that said, “Let it go!”.

Now, that seems simple. But, it had a great hold on my every day life. I liked it. I planned my day around it. It was ruling me. Once I decided to get rid of it, it left. I haven’t longed for it, I haven’t wished for it, I haven’t even tried to figure out a way around getting back to it.

It’s not something I want in my life anymore.

That’s exactly what God desires for us in every aspect of our lives. He wants us to CHOOSE HOLY over worldly. His plan for us never involves sin. We do that to ourselves. We lock ourselves into sin habits or sin thinking. Then, our hearts twist up the truth with the lies we tell our brains and the result is a lifestyle that doesn’t match up with God’s plan for us. But, then….there’s grace.

If there ever were a poster child for GRACE, there you’ll see me.

See, there’s nothing so bad….not one sin that God isn’t ready and willing to forgive us for and to help us overcome in our lives. He is in the forgiveness business. He sent His Son because HE KNEW we would need that kind of sacrificial love and mercy.

Listen, if you’re believing the lies you tell yourself that you don’t need God or His ways….you’re wrong. You do, I do … we all do. He knows that. He’s ready and willing to turn you around. Don’t buy into what the world is selling. It’s cheap and it’s costly all at the same time.

You’re worth more than that.

be holy 2

Clean Up, Young Man

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

During the clean-up of Israel by young King Josiah…his workers (Hilkiah the high priest) came across a copy of The Revelation of Moses.  For years the king had been on a mission to bring back his neighborhood/temple to a place of acceptance and honor to God.  He despised the filthy shrines, the Asherah groves, the altars, the many god and goddess figurines and anything that wasn't in step with God and His holiness.  King Josiah knew, all of it had to go!

When Hilkiah found the book and shared what was written inside….King Josiah pretty much flipped!  He was distraught.  Enough so, that he jumped up and ripped his robes.  He knew that his people had been a part of exactly what God was warning about in the book of God's Revelation.  He called several of his closest aides and gave them the mission of praying to God and asking Him what they could do in light of all the clean-up of Israel and Judah.  King Josiah was convinced that God's anger must be off the charts against them. Why wouldn't it be?  

The king understood….God had every right to be upset with them.

Sadly, you and I don't always think like that…do we?  Little sin here….sneaky white lie there.  Rated R movie here….gossip about a co-worker there.  Divisive behavior here….mean spirted response there.  Aggressive behavior here…

You get the picture, right?

We live, pretty much however we want.  Most of the time.  Except on church days.  We try to behave then and honestly, who doesn't want to be seen as holy on Sunday?  We've conditioned ourselves to Christ-like behavior.  Don't tell me you don't know how to turn on the "good girl" behavior!  I know all about it, I'm an expert!

It's easy to slip into sin as a lifestyle.  Each person has the ability to turn their head the other way or justify something they want to do, as harmless.  I wonder how the people King Josiah found himself cleaning up after got started in their deep sin.  I'm sure it was innocent at first.  Maybe a little bracelet of protection at first then oh, an altar of worship.  Every little detail, justified in some way or another.

Ever justified a wrongdoing?  Yea, me too.

The more I live (and I'm getting on up there) the more I see of people watering down God's holiness.  It's becoming more and more acceptable to customize God's word and what He expects of us.  No longer is there a limit to how far anyone can go in what's acceptable and not.  

I remember growing up and flipping out when a church member wore spagetti straps (GASP!) to morning church.  Today, tank tops are considered clothes (not to me, by the way) and flip-flops are appropriate church shoes.  Now I know what you're thinking…niether of those are sin issues and you're right.  But that's a sample of how accepting we are as a society.

Smoking and drinking are hot topics in Christian circles too.  It's not sinful to most..but it is a little off-setting if you think about it.  How awkward would it be to have someone share the gospel with you while smoking a cigarette and holding a drink in their hand?  I think it would be a little odd.

Followers (Christians) are to be set apart.

Our behavior, actions and lifestyle are all a part of our relationship with Christ.  It's important for our outside to match our inside.  I'm not going to mention any names… but there is a Christian worship leader who thrives (out in Twitter, blogland and Facebook) on being edgy.  He likes to use shocking language and totally pushes the envelope on touchy topics.  He's very popular and while I'm sure his ministry is rockin'….I find him a little raunchy!  I mean, I get it..he's trying to reach people.  His messages are oftentimes right in line with what the world likes to accept as normal.  I feel convicted when I read some of his comments/blogs/tweets.  Not the kind of convicted that causes me to repent but the kind that says….IS THIS GUY IN LOVE WITH THE SAME JESUS AS ME?

That's just me.  I'm safe.  I've always been that way.

What is it that God expects of you and me?  Is it risky dangerous outlandish behavior to get other's to follow Christ?  I don't think it is.  Does He call us out of our comfort zone to follow Him?  Indeed, He does.  Does he ever put us in a position of sin in order to do so?  NEVER!

For King Josiah, God saw that his heart was completely line with His and promised that He would protect him as long as he obeyed.  The king trusted God and along with his followers committed to God's Covenant publicly.  They agreed to the change.  No more Baal shrines, no sex-and-religion shrines and no more followers of any gods besides the ONE TRUE GOD.  This is what God expects of us.  He wants holiness, honor, righteousness….trust & faith.

What needs to go?  What do you need to clean out of your life?  Just like Josiah, you can sweep through and remove whatever doesn't belong there.  Don't hold back.

His Word…is true!

FYI: The scripture I was reading today was 2 Chronicles 34.  King Josiah was in his early twenties when he went to work cleaning up his kingdom.  You can start — no matter how young or old you are, right now!

Reality or Not

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Why is there such a fascination in our country to watch reality shows? What does it say about us as people? It seems the edgier the participants of the show the more popular they are. Uhh, hello Jersey Shore! Most of these shows are filled with nudity, heavy drinking and no big deal hooking up! We the cable paying public keep these people going.

Sad, huh?

I’m not trying to be a bonafied fuddy-dud, really. I love to watch tv. Matter of fact, my whole family would rather stay home and hog up tv time than do most anything else. Lame! We like being home and tv is crucial to the mix. I tend to watch the same stuff just not on a regular basis. Reality shows aren’t part of that lineup either. Except, I have been known to watch the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, New Jersey, & Orange County. Just not regularly.

Yesterday, I read the sad news that a husband from RH of BH committed suicide. The story is so sad. These are real people with real lives and real problems. Maybe we watch them because it’s an escape from our reality. We size up their problems and compare ours to theirs then justify our behavior based on what we see them do. Never have I heard anyone profess Christ on either of the shows or act like they have a relationship with God. Usually it’s just trainwreck petty behaviors riddled with shallowness and snobbery.

But–we watch anyway! 🙁

I’ve broken my own arm patting myself on the back (in my sick self-righteousness) regarding the many raunchy reality shows I DON’T watch. Yea, I’m one of those Miss Goody-Two-Shoes! If I think it’s sleazy and disgusting (Uhh, hello again…Jersey Shore) I refuse to watch it. See how I manipulate my own mind into believing I’m holding onto my holiness? Twisted, that’s me.

This latest sad truth reminds me that parading your life before America can end in tragedy. Families fall apart (mmm, Jon & Kate), privileged children run wild (mmm, Hulk Hogan’s kids), rich girls have no respect for common people (err, Paris & Nicole) and sadly….true love isn’t found in a tv matchmaker series (oh Bachelor/Bachelorette)! Real life doesn’t deserve to be exploited for money.

Tell me….do you think reality shows are harmless? Or am I being too harsh and judgemental?

“Create in me a pure heart O God and renew a right spirit within me” Ps 51:10