I feel sad when the only idea that enters people’s minds about Christianity is how to get a ‘get out of jail free card’ in the ‘monopoly game’ of life. The Christian spiritual life is about so much more. There are hard challenges yes! but fulfilling answers to our deepest needs. Going deeper with Jesus is what our spiritual life is about and that means dealing with the tough questions here and now. John, one of the first followers of Jesus, brings one of those questions out here for a hearing: 

All who indulge in a sinful life are dangerously lawless, for sin is a major disruption of God’s order. Surely you know that Christ showed up in order to get rid of sin. There is no sin in him, and sin is not part of his program. No one who lives deeply in Christ makes a practice of sin. None of those who do practice sin have taken a good look at Christ. They’ve got him all backward. 1 John 3:4-6 (The Message)

Just because a person is a follower of Jesus and tries to do the right thing morally it does not make them sin free. Nor is the matter of sin in our lives a matter of degrees of sinfulness. For our Holy God any amount of sin spoils our relationship with him. We have the choice, we can deal with it now and get it out of our lives, through faith and discipline in our lives. We can choose to let God deal with it through seeking him in prayer, confession, and repentance, or we can let it lie and depend on the grace of God alone! I know what I would rather do and I know what I would rather have. I would rather get to grips with the sinful nature that drives me out of the presence of the Holy and allow the work of God within me to present me holy and blameless today. I want to be as Christ intended and my dearest wish is to see the joy of my salvation today without seeking a cop-out clause because I would rather have my cake and eat it.

What about you? As we approach the season of Lent how determined are you to seek God through abstinence and prayer? How committed are you to seek the Holy God so that you too will be holy (but not holier than thou, God forbid). How is your view of Jesus, is it a backwards view or are you facing him full on and seeking to reflect his holiness in your life? It isn’t the way of soft and easy grace but the impact of that amazing grace of God in Jesus that transforms our hearts, minds, bodies, and souls by his kingdom coming in our lives for good! This season of Lent, why not take up the challenge of holiness?

Holy God, Lord of power and might. Life transformer, heart energizer, soul restorer, let my life reflect your holiness today. Raise up in me the commitment and the will to deal with sin in my daily life. Over power its power in me and bring me closer to you this day and every day. Amen.