I’ve been thinking about discipline as I attempt to get back in shape and it occurred to me – we (or at least I) tend to blame a lot of other things for the fact we do not eat and exercise like we should. My work is exhausting. The kids schedule is nuts this time of year. We’re down by a car. It’s easier/cheaper just to grab something quick. I will as soon as……. fill in the blank – you get the picture? We tend to blame all of these outward influences and never get to the root problem and that problem is us.
But… this morning I realized, we do the same thing with holiness. Oh I’d read my Bible – but the kid’s schedule. I’m so tired after work and I need to be up early. As soon as we get back to… see my point? The biggest hindrance to us pursuing holiness is – us.
One of my favorite modern preachers is Matt Chandler and he said “you will not fall into holiness.” This is something you must chase hard after. Like eating right and moving your body – no one else can do it for you. The Bible commands it Matthew 5:48 and 1 Peter 1:16. No – we will not reach sinlessness this side of Heaven, but that does not excuse us going after holiness – praying that tomorrow we look more like our Savior than we do today.
The Lord was kind enough to give us the Holy Spirit, the Word, the Church and His Armor to help. …having put on the breastplate of righteousness, Ephesians 6:14b brothers and sisters we must guard our heart – that’s why the breastplate is there. May we not be like the ones Jesus and Isaiah were calling to repentance saying – sure their words are all churchy, but the stuff down deep in their heart looks nothing like God. (my paraphrase Matthew 15:8 and Isaiah 29:13)
I read in a running magazine once a runner declare “I’ve never regretted a run I went on, but have regretted a many a one I didn’t.” I’d say the same thing about running after holiness. I’ve never once regretted reading my Bible or spending time in prayer, but there are far too many times I’ve regretted not doing just that. So what’s your excuse? Call up your prayer partner, pick up your Bible and while you’re at it – get up off the couch and put down those chips.