11 Woe to those who rise early in the morning
to run after their drinks,
who stay up late at night
till they are inflamed with wine.
12 They have harps and lyres at their banquets,
pipes and timbrels and wine,
but they have no regard for the deeds of the LORD,
no respect for the work of his hands.
34 “Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with carousing, drunkenness and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you suddenly like a trap. 35 For it will come on all those who live on the face of the whole earth. 36 Be always on the watch, and pray that you may be able to escape all that is about to happen, and that you may be able to stand before the Son of Man.”
: devoted entirely to the deity or the work of the deity <a holy temple> <holy prophets>
Scripture indicates the necessity for the children of God to display a holy vigilance towards Him. This can be seen in the above verses. A holy vigilance in the way that we live out our lives in every area. If we can slowly remove the clutter in our lives that separate us from experiencing, knowing and serving God more, it will truly be a blessing to our own lives, a blessing to others and give God glory.
I used to think of the word "holy" as just being an attribute associated with God. When I think of holy I think of something set apart because of its purity. That definitely would be one way to describe God. Because of His amazing capabilities, because of His infinite wisdom and eternal existence, for sure He is set apart from the rest of us. But are we, as followers, set apart from the rest of the world in our perspective towards the way we live and go about things? Or do we jump into activities with others that we might know do not glorify God, but do it anyways? Figuring perhaps that it's not important, or God won't mind, or perhaps reminding ourselves of the fact that we go to church, maybe participate in a prayer group...heck we try our best..if we do "this little thing" for sure God won't mind.
Is that true though?
God calls us to be holy. We can see that in 1 Peter 1:16 : 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
If Jesus were to return to this world this very second, what does your heart tell you about the matter in which you would be received? We all fall short of the glory of God but it is through earnest effort, deliberate prayer, meditation and time in the scriptures that we become less and less cleaved to this world and more and more cleaved to our Creator. It is surely through the workings of the Spirit that we progress down the path of sanctification.
Would Jesus catch us joining in the world's revelry, separating ourselves from the reality of God and the place that we have in Him to partake in feasting upon the fleeting fruits of the world that only turn into ashes in our mouth and whose taste never linger but fade quickly? Or would He find us to be a vigilant people, continually striving towards holiness, continually preparing our hearts for Him and continually seeking to walk on this earth more like Jesus, bringing glimpses of His Kingdom here on earth?
Important questions to ask ourselves, especially during this season of Advent, when we are preparing our hearts to celebrate the time when our savior came to earth in the form of a baby, to live tempted as we are tempted, yet in his purity living unhindered by the temptations of this world. May we find the strength, through the Spirit, to become less and less hindered and susceptible to the ways of this world and become more and more vigilant in preparing our hearts for God and entering into more acts of service, as they bear fruit for His Kingdom and bring glory to His name.
We thank you for your unending mercy and grace. We thank you for being a God of compassion and love. May we never take for granted the blessings you heap on us-the physical blessings of warm homes, food on our tables and clothes to wear. The spiritual blessings of peace and joy and of your presence. May we stay focused on striving to bring you glory and manifesting your Kingdom here on earth. May we rejoice in knowing you and continually seek your face and be satisfied spiritually in our pursuit of you, looking to no other ways of feeling fulfilled and at peace. May you and you alone be our source of strength and may your love be the means and ends in our lives. To experience your love, to seek your love and to spread your love. May you purify us on our walks and may the Spirit spur us onwards towards a holy vigilance.
In Jesus' name,
In Jesus' name,