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Saturday, 05/20/2023 3:47:52 AM

Saturday, May 20, 2023 3:47:52 AM

Post# of 30284
Sanctification in the Waiting

~ As we spend time this week focusing on God’s character, allow who He is to stir up your desire to know Him even more.

1 Corinthians 13:4 tells us, “Love is patient.” Patience is a part of love that doesn’t feel fun at the beginning. It feels like an act of self-control rather than passion, as if the two aren’t perfectly connected. And it often comes across as a sign of weakness rather than an attribute of the bold and powerful we so often admire. But Scripture teaches us a different view of patience. 2 Peter 3:8-9 says:

“Dear friends, don’t let this one thing escape you: With the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. The Lord does not delay His promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance.”

God, in His passionate desire for restored relationship with all His children, has perfect patience toward us. His passion leads Him to patience. And it is in His desire to see us grow in all manner of holiness and godliness that He waits to bring about the restoration of all things to Him with the coming of the new heavens and earth. Let’s open our hearts today to become more like our heavenly Father and allow Him to create in us a heart worthy of Him who has so patiently loved us.

I fear that much of the bride of Christ is living day-to-day, getting by until Jesus returns. And I fear that in our complacency we are not engaging in the purposes for which Christ came. God’s intention here is to use us to bring about a saving knowledge to all those around us. His plan was for restoration of relationship here, not just biding our time while suffering from a lack of His reality working in our lives. 2 Peter 3:14 says, “And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen [new heavens and a new earth], make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in His sight.” And Hebrews 12:3-11 says:

“Think of all the hostility He endured from sinful people; then you won’t become weary and give up. After all, you have not yet given your lives in your struggle against sin. And have you forgotten the encouraging words God spoke to you as His children? He said:

“My child, don’t make light of the Lord’s discipline, and don’t give up when He corrects you. For the Lord disciplines those He loves, and He punishes each one He accepts as His child.”

“As you endure this divine discipline, remember that God is treating you as His own children. Who ever heard of a child who is never disciplined by its father? If God doesn’t discipline you as He does all of His children, it means that you are illegitimate and are not really His children at all. Since we respected our earthly fathers who disciplined us, shouldn’t we submit even more to the discipline of the Father of our spirits, and live forever?”

“For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in His holiness. No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening — it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.”

Because God loves us, He does not desire for us to remain as we were or as we are. His plan is to do such a work in us that we live on this earth as Jesus did. But He is entirely patient to accomplish this work. He is entirely patient with our sanctification.

When I began engaging in the process of sanctification I was filled with frustration. For the first time I began to see all the dirt and muck covering up this beautiful gift of a new nature God had given me. I felt like I was never going to be able to get through all the sin that seemed to so entangle me to my old nature, and I was right. Scripture teaches us that it is God, in His patience, who produces holiness and godliness. In my own strength I have no ability to change my heart. My only job is to engage with Him and allow Him to work in and through me. Philippians 2:13 says:

“For it is God who is working in you, enabling you both to desire and to work out His good purpose.”

God’s desire isn’t for us to engage in works that have the appearance of morality but aren’t flowing from the true desire of our hearts. His longing is to mold and shape our hearts by His love into a perfect reflection of His heart so that we might live true lives of holiness out of the overflow of what He has done in us. Only He can accomplish such a work. Only He can fill us with the ability to truly love. And as 2 Peter 3:9 tells us, He is patient to do so.

Spend time in prayer discovering the patient heart of your heavenly Father. Spend time allowing His love to draw you into the process of sanctification. And allow the Holy Spirit to do a mighty work in you today, bringing about holiness and godliness where it seemed only sin and worldliness could dwell.

~ by Craig Denison

God has promised to deliver us from this world. We have hope that the trials and tribulations of this world will not be forever. Jesus is coming again to restore all things to be as they should. Find peace and joy in the fact that God is both working now and will work then. He is both healing, transforming, and freeing us now as He will then. In His patience He is passionately waiting for more to come to know Him. May your life be a reflection of His perfect love to all those around you, that Jesus might gain the due reward of His suffering through you.

Where will you spend ETERNITY?

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