“But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written” ‘Be holy, because I am holy” 1 Peter 1:15-16 (NIV).
The further our culture gets from God, it seems the less we, even the Church, are in awe of His holiness—the kind of crying out where we declare our unworthiness when we encounter God like the prophet Isaiah did as he saw the LORD seated on His throne. Instead, we’ve made the holiness of the King of all kings tepid and have painted a picture of a God who is so tolerant of sin that He would never condemn anyone to eternal punishment. The reality is, God is perfectly righteous and His wrath will be poured out on all unrighteousness. Simply to be in His presence should cause us to fall down in awe in reverence, never leaving us the same.
If God weren’t holy, then we wouldn’t have needed the sinless sacrifice of His Son. Before the Apostle Peter repeats God’s calling for us to be holy as He is holy (1 Peter 1:16), he paints a picture of a loving God who showed great mercy in order for those who have faith to have new birth into a living hope, an eternal inheritance that will never spoil. With this gift there is no more separation from our loving God. He made us holy—not to the point of holding wrath and judgment in our hands—but to the place of being set apart. To live out of this gift, we are called to put aside our evil desires and live as holy strangers in this world. This gives us an eternal perspective, which allows us to endure anything we encounter.
1 Peter 1:15 says we are to be holy in ALL that we do. This is a convicting statement as people venture out onto the support-raising journey where the pursuit of money reigns and has the potential to make Christians not only act worldly but to experience undue stress. But what does it mean to be holy on this journey? First, we must understand that God has placed us on this journey for a reason. Having to raise support is not a mistake. This time is God-ordained as an intentional way for us to share our stories of what our awesome God has done in our lives. That change in perspective often changes our attitude. We can freely set aside our panic, burden, and overall feeling of being overwhelmed and simply rest in His presence.
Just like when Isaiah said, “Here am I, send me,” we, too, should take the time to encounter God in his holiness and be stirred into action by the God who loved us enough to pursue a relationship with us. He is asking us to be set apart, to be different, even on the support-raising journey. This is more than just a change in action, but a change of heart as we fall to our knees in awe of our awesome God. Let this thought guide every conversation and meeting you have. If we miss this opportunity on the support-raising journey, then this time becomes just an arduous task instead of an avenue to talk about our holy God. Let’s take our conversations and make them pleasing to God. My prayer for you is that by living as holy on this journey, you will keep an eternal perspective so that you can endure anything that comes your way.
- How is this thought of God being holy going to change your support-raising journey?
- Take time to encounter our holy God.
*First posted on Godandelephants.com on August 4