Sometimes we fall into the trap of treating our Christian faith as a magic trick. We think, ‘if I am a Christian somehow our problems, poor habits of thinking and behaving will be overcome.’ We never really believe this will happen but we at times act as if it might.
In vs. 2 above it says, ‘but be transformed by the renewing of your minds…’
This is an action we must undertake. It will not magically happen.
Without repeating everything written in the last Update, we are the sum total of our habits, good and bad, deliberate and unconscious, those we set up and those we picked up along the way without thought.
We as a staff and team live close to each other in ways that people who work in other jobs most often do not. We have sacrificed personally greatly for this mission. The hours can be very long where we do not work 5 days a week but any time of the week that work has to be done. We are all always ‘on’ you might say 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. That is the nature of proclamation ministry. By working so closely together, we know each other. We even know as the Scripture describes, ‘each other’s sin.’ We know each other’s poor habits, attitudes
and things we do that sometimes the person is not aware of themselves.
Let’s all think of Scott or John or Justin or Melissa, etc. It is easy to see their weakness, is it not? We know what frustrates and even angers us about them. We know how we cover for them or even make excuses for them.
Then think of yourself. Can you see your weaknesses? Of course, you can.
Are you stuck in behaviors that you wish you could change? If your answer is, ‘no I am good with everything,’ then let’s have a staff meeting and I am sure we can enlighten you about you.
Holiness is the calling of God to ‘wholeness.’ I repeat that is being all that we were made by God to be.
In times past, we thought of the priest, the pastor, the religious nun or brother as holy because they had given their lives to God through their vocation and the sacrifices that they make and the fact that well, they pray a lot.
So often we do not see that we as lay people are called to the same level of holiness and that both the Scriptures and the teaching found in the Church documents exhorts (encourages) us to be just as holy. To be saints where we are.
The problem with the New Year’s resolution approach to personal change or the motivational course drive for change is that they do not address the spirituality of change that we as Christian’s are called to which is that we are called to be holy, or all that we can be before God.
In the accompanying Video Message to the last Update, I spoke about how to make serious change in our lives and break deeply ingrained habits by setting up reminders in our smartphones to help us reflect on areas in our lives we need to change by evaluating how we went over the past few hours and not the past few days.
Personal change to become holy is difficult to come to because it strikes at the deepest parts of us.
Many people think that holiness is going to Church and being pious in the ways they pray and behave but holiness is much, much more. It is a very deep conversion of our inner self to Christ’s will in the totality of us.
At the surface level, people can fall into the trap of thinking that setting some reminders in our phone is just a method to change some bad habits and I want to say to you, IT IS NOT, IT IS NOT, IT IS NOT, IT IS NOT….
It is more than a simple technique that we can learn at a motivational event, a business course or make as a New Year’s resolution. It is a striving for holiness and the rooting out of our lives of both sin and human weakness that prevent us from becoming and being all that God has called us to be.
As staff and as members of this ministry you are called to be holy for three reasons;