Holy: adj. set apart, consecrated to God
Holiness: noun, the state of being holy
One of the greatest lessons the Lord has been teaching me so far this year is about His passion for holiness. Not just about His own holiness, which He guards jealously (see Ps. 24:3-4, Is. 48:9-11, 57:15, Ez. 20:41b-44, 36:20-28, and so many more), but for the holiness of His children as well. It makes sense – as the heirs of His Kingdom, His great desire is for our sanctification, to mold us into clearer images and reflections of Himself and His character.
Hear the word of the Lord:
“It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” — Hebrews 12:7-11
This passage jumped out at me earlier this spring, at a time when I was questioning/contemplating my present trials and heartaches. And it was then that I realized:
God cares more about my holiness than my happiness.
And in addition to that, if He has to choose between giving me something or putting me in a situation that will make my happy or holy, He will always choose the holy one, even if it means me experiencing momentary (or not-so-momentary) pain. Always. Because that is who He is – a Great, Holy God who is passionate about Holiness. His, mine, and yours.
More on this subject to come….