Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Pure and Blameless

** Had the wonderful opportunity to write the preparation guide for our upcoming revival. Part of it is daily devotionals for the week preceding. Thought I'd share them! This is yesterday's. **

Read Philippians 1:1 - 11

"And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ." Philippians 1:9 - 10 NIV

Pure and blameless ... a noble goal for all of us. But, to be honest, doesn't it seem quite out of reach. After all, we know that "We are all messed up!" We don't even need our pastor to remind us of that truth each week, for most of us are acutely aware of tht reality every single day. Paul's admonition to the church at Philippi is a call to our church as well. So, what is that direction? What does it mean? And, most importantly, HOW do we follow it?

Consider first the word "pure." Pure can be defined as guileless, sincere, transparent, acting in full disclosure. Perhaps the easiest way to understand what Paul is encouraging us to be is to think about holding something up to the light of the sun and finding no foreign elements, no particles of contamination. Wow! When our heart are held up to the SON, what shows in that perfect light? In order to experience purity, we must be willing to hold up those things inside of us that are hidden to others, and let the convicting power of the Light of the World show us what is there. Being pure, then, is about what is in the inside.

So, if purity is about what is on the inside, what about being blameless? Blameless, in the context of this verse, refers to the following: Not causing others to stumble morally, not giving occasion to fall into sin, being unobjectionable and inoffensive, not creating feelings of repugnance or disgust, not being an affront. Ouch! Blameslessness is all about what we DO and how we BEHAVE. Sometimes, we manage to convince ourselves that others don't notice those "little things" we do, or even worse, that we are somehow not responsible for our behavior because "that's just the way God made me." Nothing could be farther from the truth of God's Word. We are to be "transformed by the renewing of our minds" (Romans 12:2). As we engage in our relationship with Christ, we find ourselves changing - and we must be actively seeking that transformation, not simply waiting around for it to happen. That being the case, being blameless is a serious calling in our lives and it is a calling that is seen by others.

The goal for today is EXAMINATION. Where are you today in these two areas? Are you willing to allow the Holy Spirit to move in you - to check your attitudes to move you into purity and to check your behaviors to guide you into blamelessness? Take time today to allow God to search your heart and your life and be open to what He shows you. Take action to make specific and immediate changes in both your attitudes and beahviors in order that you "may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ."

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