Thursday, April 8, 2010

Don't be a Cupcake

This is the passage I read for my quiet time this morning. It is from 1 Peter 1:

13 Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15 but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16 since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy."


Our response to such a salvation as ours is to prepare [our] minds for action. We prepare when we are sober-minded, which is opposite of being tossed to-and-fro amidst the waves of distraction and the swells of lust that permeate our culture. Peter continues his request by stating you are not to be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance. The world is a cupcake tin and you are dough. The most natural thing is to come out of the oven a cupcake. We are called to live lives that do not reflect the world, but rather the holiness of God.

I'll stop here for a minute, because everything preceding is leading up to this incredible point. It is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy." The World will form and change you. Movies are not a passive experience. The mall is not a passive experience. They shape the way you look and think. The change is imperceptible at first, but small changes add up.

We are so easily conformed because we are not used to holding ourselves to the standards of a Holy God, rather it is easier to be "just a bit better than that guy." Your standard is perfect. The holiness that you are called to is wholly pure.

Of course it is easy to say "Well Zack, you aren't perfect and never will be, how does this matter?" Our perfection will not be met on this side of eternity (Phil 3), but we strive on, not out of an attempt to keep a rule, but out of the overflow of our thankfulness and love for all that has been done for us. We conform ourselves not to this world, but out of love for our savior and redeemer, we run the race of holiness. It is a race run out of love.

Finally we come to the question, how is all of this "holiness keeping" joy? Peter tells us to set our hope on this. This seems more like drudgery than hope.

Imagine you are standing before the most holy God. He is so Holy, so Just, and so Righteous. How does your life match up? We stand without excuse. We are utterly condemned, but for His Son, who was crushed on our behalf. You are standing before the judge who should condemn you with death, but he spares you, and condemns his Son instead. It is joy because you can be in the presence of God! It is hope because you have the ability to be in relationship with the only Person who will ever fulfill. You are given the opportunity to serve the King of Kings!

The HOLY GOD OF THE UNIVERSE has crushed his Son with your sinfulness so that He can have a relationship with you. How blessed are you? What will your response be?

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