13 Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming. 14 As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance.15 But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; 16 for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
17 Since you call on a Father who judges each person’s work impartially, live out your time as foreigners here in reverent fear. 18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.21 Through him you believe in God, who raised him from the dead and glorified him, and so your faith and hope are in God.
22 Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart. 23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. 24 For,
“All people are like grass,
and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall,
25 but the word of the Lord endures forever.”
And this is the word that was preached to you.
fully sober – recently i have been thinking back and forth about how seriously the bible takes sobriety. it seems to be pretty clear that we are to be of sober mind. however i also have a problem with the way Christians legally and judgmentally approach people who drink or smoke. I don’t like that someone feels totally fine about a person and then once they discover that they drink/smoke that changes the way they feel about that person. Or that that person is somehow less of a Christian. I also think that Christian people can stumble others by drinking too much or smoking too much. SO again. I am torn. I think the easiest and most straight forward answer is for myself personally, that I want to refrain from drinking to drunkenness and smoking to be high. However I am open about my struggle here. Especially recently because i haven’t been in consistent christian community, I find myself wanting to “escape” and hang around non christians who i know smoke a lot or get drunk to have fun. in their presence i feel a release of myself and allow myself to run away from something. and at the same time i build of this plaque on my teeth kind of guilt about being a bad representation of Christ to them. WHILE at the same time also brushing that off and telling myself that Naomi was telling Ruth to run away from God and that still brought Ruth to God. All of this to say … this is on my mind.
set your hope – interesting that hope can be “set.” Hope is something you have in/on something, so you have to set it in that thing. it’s not just an abstract concept that floats in the air when you’re sad and someone’s like “have hope!” you have to have something to be able to set your hope in/on
as obedient children – this is kind of tied to my thoughts on “sober mind.” i think recently there have been things that God is clearly just asking me to be obedient about and i think these are definitely things that I choose to be ignorant about. Like I always say to myself, if God clearly asks me “don’t drink” “don’t smoke” then I wouldn’t. It’s only because to me, in my opinion, he hasn’t said that to me … but then i challenge myself by saying ok well let’s pretend like he has said it to you … could you even do it?? and then i try to go for a while of not doing these things and i just fall back into them … and my excuse for falling back in is because i don’t want to be a “legalistic” pharisee. but maybe the truth is just that i need to be an obedient child. it’s funny that they say child because a child is SO obedient! they just trust and do what they are told! they haven’t thought yet about why they do or don’t want to do what they are told. i think it’s also really clear here that your desires can be evil. sometimes i think i don’t like to admit that my desires can be evil … i want desires to always be “natural” but maybe just because they are natural doesn’t mean they aren’t evil!
be holy in all you do – i think there are other bible passages that talk about this, but my main question here is ok … what does that mean then? how do i do that?
father who judges; reverent fear – this verse is interesting to me … if God is our Father, then why is he judging us? I guess my dad judges me too? I think by judge it doesn’t mean “thinks badly of” it just means assesses or evaluates? and also if he’s my father than why do i need to fear him? I think I need a deeper understanding of why and how we fear God.
perishable v imperishable – i like this theme of what is perishable and what is not. God is not perishable whereas our own glory is.
Things have been better in the last few days. I feel more stable. I feel like I just have to keep going. I feel like a source of support for other people. It’s always funny how it shifts like that. How either i’m doing so so badly and i can’t think of anyone else but myself. and i’m crying and struggling. or im doing great but then get all these things from other people.
praying for D as she tries to sell the house. i’m not sure how i’m supposed to tell her about you. does it count if i don’t say your name at all but am just a good roommate and a loving person? or do you call me to be blunt and say something about you? and say that I think it’s important that she knows you? how do i do that? is that on my heart as something to do? is that something you are commanding me to do? is there a time for that? show me please. i do care about her. i do get annoyed by her. but i also know that this time that i lived with her was important. she is in my prayers. i know she is someone that you love deeply. teach me how to show sincerely love to her from my heart.
praying for my new rooming situation. please help me get cheaper rent haha. help me to get along with the girl that i live with. im not sure if it will work out. im not even sure if i want to keep living in this state. but
thank you Jesus. thank you for all of the privilege you have given me. thank you that i have a computer to type on and a phone to use and a job to work at. thank you that i have money to buy food and a car to drive. thank you for these material things. help me not to be defined by these material things. Jesus I only want to be defined by you. I don’t want the most important thing in my life to be chasing after the things you call perishable. i want to be growing from an imperishable seed. i want to be rooted firmly in your everlasting WORD. i want to be purified through obedience so that i can set my hope in YOU in something that’s faithful. help me to be more like an obedient child who just does what you are asking me to do. not one who conforms to what is easier or what is comfortable or what i want to do just because i want to do it.
please see my heart Jesus. with all of the struggles and sin and disobedience, please see my heart and that it yearns for you. let my words not just be words. let this time that i’ve been here in connecticut be one where i become grounded in my relationship with you. in the midst of loneliness and more loneliness. in the midst of boring work or weird people or death or drama. God i just want to be closer to you. i am tired of pretending like you aren’t there and that i can figure this all out without you. i want to come back to resting in your presence. sharpen me. i am still just a christian that speaks christianese. i am still just a double agent that fades in the background when i want to fit in. i am still a depressed fool who denies you even as i spent so much time with you and know that you are my savior. thank you for your mercy and grace. use this time of my singleness for your glory. remind me again that i’m not the star of this show. you are and you have always been!