pastorjohnb

Thoughts and musings on faith and our mighty God!


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Holy

Reading: Leviticus 19: 1-2

Today’s verses contain quite a challenge.  God calls us to be holy.  What does it mean to be ‘holy’?  Does it require us to be loving all the time, to never sin, to always be a servant to others?  Is this a 24-7 thing?  When taken from the ‘why’ part of these verses – “because I, the Lord your God, am holy” – it would appear impossible for us.  Yes, God is holy.  Yes, God is without sin.  Yes, God is love.  It is just who and what God is.  And so God tells us to be holy too.

The call to be holy is akin to a parent saying a child, ‘now be good’, as they head out the door to school or to some event.  Yes, the parent wants their child to be good, but this is not always the case, even though most children head off intending to be good as they leave the house.  This too is our struggle.  Even though one awakens every morning and seeks God’s guidance and direction in the day ahead, at times we falter and sin.  This is a limitation of our humanity.  But the grace of God is greater than our weakness!

John Wesley called our walk of faith the “journey towards perfection”.  That is what we are on.  No, I am not perfect.  No, I am not always holy.  But is that my goal?  Yes!  We are ever called to push on “towards the goal” of attaining life in Christ in heaven.  To do so, to accomplish this task, we are being transformed day by day.  It is a slow but steady process.  The transforming work is done by God alone, but others play a role.

For our part, we must seek God daily and invest in growing closer to God, to being holy.  We read and meditate on the Word, we pray and we worship.  W choose to engage with other Christians for support, encouragement, and accountability.  The gift of the Holy Spirit also plays an important role.  God created each of us and knows each of us intimately.  Therefore, God knows our reality.  Into our limitations, God breathes the Holy Spirit.  The Spirit constantly prays for us, continually works to keep us aligned with God, convicts us when necessary, always working to draw us closer to God, closer to holiness.  Yes, we are imperfect, but thank God for His unending love and patience, for the presence of the Holy Spirit, and for ever drawing us closer and closer to being holy.


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Christ’s Witnesses

On our bulletin we have a box listing the staff of the church and on the first line it reads: “Ministers…. The Congregation.”  It is important to define the body of Christ as those whose ‘job’ it is to go forth in ministry to the world.  All Christians everywhere have the charge to go forth into their world to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ.

The idea that all Christians are part of this work of the church first originated during the Reformation and was referred to as the ‘priesthood of all believers’.  It is not the role of just the pastor or priest, but the role of all believers to be priests in their world by being the witness and presence of God to those in their midst, to their neighbors.

Clergy do have a role to fill.  Those calls to formal ministry must offer the sacraments and must lead, teach, guide, and equip the people of God to be minnisters to their neighbors.  These clergy and the whole body of Christ prays for one another, encourages one another, hold one another accountable, supports one another, and works alongside one another.  All of us together help build the kingdom of God here on earth.

Jesus Christ was and is and is to come.  We, as the priesthood of all believers, must carry His message of love and grace and forgiveness out into a world living in darkness.  As believers we must all be Christ’s witnesses and presence in the world through our words, actions, and deeds.  Today may we represent well.

Scripture reference: Revelation 1: 4b-8