1 Peter 1:13-25 – Do You Live to be Happy or Holy?

by Kathy

Happy or Holy

 

Read:  1 Peter 1:13-25

Last week, we talked about how we should rejoice and have hearts filled with praise due to the “living hope” we have – our salvation – which is permanent!  Thank you Jesus!  This week, we read that this unchanging, imperishable salvation should lead us to do more than just praise God for our salvation.  It should lead us to live holy lives.  In this passage, Peter shares with us what that looks like.

1.  “Prepare your minds for action”.   Our mind can get us into trouble pretty quickly cant it?  Ever heard this saying, “your problems start between the ears”?  First we think on the problem, then we keep dwelling on it, sometimes assuming the wrong thing, and then we act on it.  Improper thinking can lead to poor responses.   To avoid this, we must spend time filling our minds with the truth of God’s Word so that our actions are pure and right, honoring the Lord.

2.”Be self-controlled”.  Some Bible translations use the words “be sober”.  I believe this phrase is not just talking about the influence of alcohol.  In a broader sense, the meaning of this word means to be free from anything that clouds your moral or spiritual judgment, causing us to lower our standards and compromise our values. Here’s the thing that we must be careful to remember:   Friends can cloud our moral and spiritual judgment.  TV programs can do this.  The internet can do this.  Books can do this…and the list can go on and on.  So to be on guard against allowing these things to cloud our thinking and producing unwise actions, we must actively listen to the Holy Spirit as we go through our day.

3.  “Set your hope on the grace to be given”.  We are to focus our thinking on the fact that Christ is returning and we will live with Him eternally.  When we actively remember this, it impacts our decisions, our goals, the things we strive for, the plans we make, and our priorities.

4.  “As obedient children, do no conform to the evil desires you had”.   Our outward life needs to demonstrate the inward change that Jesus is making in our lives.

5.  “Be holy in all you do”.  Notice the word “all”.  Holiness must be seen in every part of our life, right down to the smallest of details.  So how do we do this?   First we must remember that God not only came to save us but to live in us and help us.  Next, I believe we ask for it.  “Lord, fill me with your presence and make me holy in every part of my life”.  This is not just a one time asking and poof it’s done.  Transformation is a on-going process.

Honestly, these five actions can be a little (OK a lot!) overwhelming.  They are not easy to live out because they require us to personally make sacrifices day in and day out, submit to the One who knows us best, live a discipline spiritual life…and well…look quite different than everyone else.  All the while we are trying to do this, the culture we live in makes it even harder for us by telling us (loudly, I might add!) to live according to its standards (which are often not holy) and find happiness.

We are constantly being wooed by things that intoxicate us into thinking that our happiness is found in them.  But true contentment is only found following the heart of Jesus and living holy lives for the One who died and lives again for us.  Because of Him, we can find joy right smack dab in the middle of doing things we don’t like and pushing through with things that are hard.

Take a moment and re-read the above five actions.  Think about your current way of living.  What needs to be rearranged in your life to reflect these actions?  Here are some questions to ask yourself:

  • Do you need to spend time regularly reading the Bible?  Is there something that you will have to give up or specifically do to be intentional about this?
  • Do you need to change what you are watching on the television or reading?
  • Are there certain activities that you have become absorbed with, frequently turning to, in order to make you feel happy?  Internet?  Shopping?  Food?  Drink?  Electronic devices? Friends?   _______(you fill in the blank)?  These are not bad in of themselves, but sometimes its the only “turning to” we do, leaving out turning to the Savior.
  • How do you spend your day?  What are your long range plans?  What are your priorities in life?  How do you use the provisions God has given to you?  Do your answers reflect that your life here is temporary and heaven is forever?
  • Does your thought pattern, speech, and conduct reflect you are a Christ follower?  Are your thoughts pure?  Do you tend to worry?  Do your words encourage, instill confidence or offer hope to all those around you?  Do your actions draw others to the love of Christ?  Do your words open the door for powerful prayer in your life?

I would love to encourage you to read 1 Peter 1:13-25 every morning and every night this entire week.  As you begin the day and as you go through your day, think about your thoughts and actions, asking God to help you to be holy in all you do.  As you read the verses again at night, ask God to show you ways you were not holy.  Confess them.  Ask God to show you each day how to live in such a way that He is honored and glorified.  This week’s assignment may just start a whole new way of daily living for you!

Have a Grace Full Week Pursuing Holiness ~

 

 

 

 

 

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