Let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God. (NIV)
I still wear my Vacation Bible School shirt from earlier in the summer, and when I do, I am quite conscious of it. I am aware that when I go out for a burger or to the home improvement store, I am wearing a shirt that has the name of my church on it, one that advertises my faith. I would like to think that I would act the same no matter what I wore, but I am keenly focused on my behavior when wearing that VBS shirt. Paul says we should think like this all the time.
We do not hear a lot of talk about holiness these days. It has become too associated with being holier-than-thou. Yet Paul teaches us that we must strive to perfect our holiness because we love and respect God, and he tells us how to do it. At the end of the preceding chapter of 2 Corinthians, he states bluntly that we are not to do what unbelievers do. We must purify body and spirit. We must not do what unbelievers do or think as unbelievers think. God makes a claim on every aspect of our lives.
So how do you look when you go out in public? Do you behave, talk, and think as a Christian? How do you look in the privacy of your home? Do you behave, talk, and think as a Christian? How do you look when there is no other human being around? Do you behave, talk, and think as a Christian?
Gracious Father, I stand convicted for not living the holy life to which You have called me. Too often I surrender to my base emotions. I ask forgiveness in the name of Jesus Christ and call upon Your grace through Him that by the power of the Holy Spirit I may live a holy life in honor of You. Amen.
Copyright © 2010 by Steven R. Perkins