What is your standard for holiness? When we compare ourselves to the culture or the people around us, we can come out looking pretty righteous. However, when we compare ourselves to the Holy One who, it’s a different story.
One Woman’s Story
Life changed dramatically for Janet after her divorce in the late 1970s. As a young, single mom she had to venture out into both the work and social worlds. Unfortunately, instead of clinging to the truth Janet knew from childhood, she conformed to the culture, which taught to “do what feels right to you.” Janet spent the next 17 years doing just that.
“I didn’t think I needed God. I thought I could handle things just fine by myself.” In the process, Janet wandered further and further away from God.
After 17 years of wilderness wandering, Janet attended a revival. During the altar call, the pastor asked a question God used to rip off her spiritual blinders. “If you died tonight, are you ready to meet God?” She was not.
Janet caught a glimpse of the holiness of God that night and knew the way she was living her life did not please Him. She knew her disobedience had consequences, but God also reminded her of His forgiveness and grace. He had been waiting for her to return. “God pines for His prodigals to return to Him. He never gives up. That day when I experienced His call to me to return, I sensed Him standing with open arms ready to give me a big hug.”
Overwhelmed with repentance and humility, Janet knelt in prayer to give her life back to God. “I told Him this prodigal girl had returned and I would go wherever He led.”
What’s Your Standard for Holiness?
God is the epitome of holiness. He alone determines what holy is. He is our standard for holiness. Not the culture. Not the people around us. Not even Christian leaders. God alone is the standard.
When we allow His holiness to shine into our lives it can be humbling. The light of God’s holiness reveals our sin like a UV light reveals the blemishes and sun damage on our skin. No rebellious behavior, wrong motive, or selfish attitude can hide from God’s holy brilliance.
Yet, thankfully, when God reveals our sin and calls us to repentance, He forgives. He stands with arms wide open, ready to embrace the repentant sinner. Ready to transform us by the light of His holiness.
Has God ever reminded you of His holiness to convict you of a sin in your life? How did you respond?
This post is adapted from Kathy’s 6-week Bible study, “Embraced by Holiness.”