The word holy has a bad reputation today. A holy-roller is “holier-than-thou.” Holy is placed before any and all exclamations: Holy cow! Holy smoke! Holy malarkey!
Yet in the Bible, we come to know a holy God. Peter said, “as the One who called you is holy, you also are to be holy in all your conduct” (1 Pet. 1:15, HCSB).
The English origin of our word holy is “whole.” To be “whole” is to be complete or mature. Can we aspire to be wholly whole, or wholly holy? This week let’s determine ways to be wholly holy in dependence, character, thoughts, speech, and actions.
Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you should follow in His steps.
1 Peter 2:21
Do you have an injustice bothering you? Just let me know. I’ll fix it! If someone cuts in line, I’ll be the first to let her know. If a loud cell phone conversation is being held in a public place, I’ll tell the offender to soften her tone. I can also leap tall buildings with a single bound.
I’m not saying these are unholy actions, but I know they spring from unholy attitudes. If my personal space is being invaded, like the proverbial mother hen, I spring into action to take care of my needs and the perceived needs of others.
That’s the thing about actions—they originate in our minds (hearts). If we want to clean up our actions, we must first clean up our attitudes. “Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:5, HCSB).
Galatians 5:22ff is a good place to start as I contemplate the “fruit of the Spirit.” Then, I will be more prone to act in ways that demonstrate patience, kindness, goodness, and a host of other virtues. There is a reason these virtues are called “fruit.” Fruit grows from the tree or seed-bearing plant that has nourished it. Jesus directed us to stay connected to “the vine” (Jn. 15:1-5). Good trees bear good fruit.
Think about a rude, crude, or inappropriate action you’ve witnessed recently. Then ask what attitudes prompted those events. Now examine a recent action you wish you could retrieve—a “do-over.” What attitudes motivated those actions?
Now think about a holy action you’ve seen demonstrated recently. What did she do? What attitudes do you think motivated those actions? How can you cultivate those same attitudes on a daily basis?
Today I’m going to concentrate on honoring God with my actions. Better start with an attitude adjustment!
Seeking to be wholly holy,
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