1 Peter 1:16 NIV “for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
If there is one thing I have learned in my 72+ years it is this. I can’t do this. Oh I can try, I can walk in the Spirit as God enables me but I fall short, I always do. Every Christian that I have ever known that truly tries to walk with God has told me the same thing. We fall short, even Paul the Apostle said that he hadn’t arrived there yet either.
And the more that we study God’s Word, the more that God opens our eyes, the gulf becomes bigger, not smaller. Many years ago I was ushered into God’s presence for a couple of minutes or less, you can read about it here. The reason I bring this up again is because of the reality that I experienced, the holiness of God. There are no words to adequately express what the Holiness of God is. Holiness is not a word, it is His presence, it is who He is and the difference between us and Him is beyond what words can express. It is no wonder that we read in the Old Testament that the prophets (Moses, Joshua, Manoah, Isaiah to name but a few) dropped to their knees and said they were undone when they were in His presence.
I follow a fair number of Christian blogs and also a devotional authored by BJ, a Christian who serves God in Turkey. Today he spoke about being Sodom. His honesty is brutal. Read it if you have the time. We have individually and collectively as a nation, strayed away from God so much that it is difficult to comprehend, and as we all know, things aren’t getting any better.
A dear Christian brother of mine who is now with the Lord used to say that if God doesn’t do something about our nation, He is going to have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah.
Some might say that God is just putting us down, focusing on the negative so to speak, keeping us in subjection to Himself but this is not at all true. The truth of the matter is that God is who He says He is. God is Holy.
Isaiah 55:8-9 NIV “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Sometimes, as I read what other Christians are writing about, about their short falls, about missing the mark, and my own deficiencies that I have often times written about, I remember that gift that God gave me so many years ago. Because it wasn’t just the Holiness of God that He wanted me to partially experience, it wasn’t just how different I am from Him, it was also about His love.
John 3:16 NIV “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
We are the “whosoever”, we are the recipients of His love, if we believe in and trust in His Son. I have absolutely no idea why God showed me what He did. He controlled the sound in the room so that it slowly faded away from my ears, He showed me what He wanted me to partially understand and then His presence faded away and the sound in the room slowly came back. As long as I draw breath I will never forget the wonder of His love. No words can explain it.
All I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt was that I NEVER wanted to leave His presence. NEVER.
And His love does not just extend to me, it extends to everyone who believes in and trusts in His Son. EVERYONE. Yesterday, today and tomorrow, while there is light. It’s OK to be mindful of our shortfalls, it’s OK to to ask for forgiveness, to acknowledge when we fall short but ….. and this is important, we also need to balance our prayers and be mindful and thankful for His love.
Romans 8:38-39 NIV “ For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Yes God is Holy and we are to strive to be Holy like He is.
Yes we will fall short, He already knows this and He loves us anyway. If we confess our sins He will forgive us. But don’t wallow there, don’t stay there. We look ahead, not backwards.
A thankful heart comes from knowing and understanding that the love that God extends to us is brought about by Him to us, it is sheer grace, totally unwarranted by anything that we have done. God loves us! God loves us more than we can ever imagine in our minds and hearts, much more intensely, much stronger, totally beyond our comprehension. God the Father loves us because we believe and trust in His Son and by loving His Son, we love Him.
John 6:29 KJV “ Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.”
Never allow how we fall short to over ride God’s redeeming love because as true as our short falls are, they have been met and conquered by Jesus. Jesus did what we could never do. That’s the whole point of the Law. He is the Lamb without blemish!
Do I thoroughly understand it, nope, not even close.
I don’t need to understand it, I just need to know that it is a reality and accept it. I’ve tasted God’s love, if He had of given me the option to experience His love like he did for a minute or two, every day for twenty-four hours a day, for the rest of my earthly days, it’s not even a question I have to think about. But He didn’t give me that option. So I remember and I am sharing it with you.
Never doubt that God loves you if you truly believe in His Son!
Psalm 65:3-4 KJV “Iniquities prevail against me: as for our transgressions, thou shalt purge them away. Blessed is the man whom thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in thy courts: we shall be satisfied with the goodness of thy house, even of thy holy temple.”
I really think that “we shall be satisfied” is a bit of an understatement.
Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!