Are you chasing holiness as desperately as you chased your sin?

I once heard a preacher say this:

The depths to which you indulged in your sin will be the depths to which you’ll need to live in holiness.

That has stuck with me.  What this means to me is simple:  The degree to which I chased after my sin and wallowed in it will be the same degree to which I need to chase after holiness and rest in God.  

A friend recently wrote, “powerful passions have to be met with a powerful response.”   Amen.

Paul opens his letter to the Romans introducing himself as a “slave to Christ” (Rom. 1:1).   He was delivered from much, and his life seemed to reflect such a single-minded focus on Christ which is rarely found in churches today.

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I desire to be a slave for Christ, and know I have much deeper waters to yet tread in my pursuit of holiness.   By God’s grace He is drawing me there, and I’m thankful for the freedom such slavery brings.

How powerful is your response against the powerful passions that have plagued you?

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5 thoughts on “Are you chasing holiness as desperately as you chased your sin?

  1. So what does holiness mean to you, Chad? I’ve been shaped by my Southern Baptist upbringing in which I was surrounded by people who were hyper-zealous about rule-following, but it didn’t translate into a Christlike heart towards other people. There seemed to be a whole lot more Galatians 5:19-21 fruit than Galatians 5:22-23 fruit. They may not have drank, cussed, or had premarital sex, but there was still plenty of gossip, bullying, and mean-spirited-ness. So that’s why I feel like holiness has to be more than just purity. I don’t see purity as an end in itself, but a means to the end of having a perfectly merciful heart, untainted by the defensiveness of living a lie and having ugly secrets that we take out other people. What do you hear when I say that? We’ve been shaped by very different experiences. I’m wanting to understand rather than presume.

    1. Morgan, I grew up in a holiness church. Not SBC, but close enough. I want to be careful not to throw out the baby with the bathwater just because of how I experienced others striving to be holy (and often failing).

      The chief mark of holiness, I believe, is humility. Humility will assume a certain sense of “rule-following” not for it’s own sake or end but because it is the sign of a truly broken, contrite heart. So holiness, I would say, are all the things you state but it is also about purity – before God and others and with self.

      In my experience, people who are experiencing sustained victory over former bondage to sexual sin, etc., have long given up grumbling over rules and are 100% on board with various calls to purity.

  2. Chad,

    When you’ve slogged through the depths of depravity, firmly (and humbly) drawing lines in the sand and claiming Christ’s power over the brokenness feels less like rules and more like freedom. It does for me, anyway, and I completely understand your heart in the series of posts you’ve offered.

    Blessings to you, brother!

    Adam

    1. Amen, Adam. I like what you say about it being less like following rules but about freedom. Before I could not not break the rules. What freedom it is to be able to, and with gladness.

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