Purity

This is going to be a good year... more than that, it's going to be a God year!

One of the things that God has really placed on my heart for this next year is the theme of Purity, one of those old, forgotten, unused kind of grandparent words to a lot of us I think... but I really feel as if God is going to be working it big time into my life this year.

In fact I was emailing one of my friends earlier sayign that this year I'm going for my PHD - Purity, Holiness and Discipline - and I think that is going to be a key area that my attention is going to be focussed on in my own life and in the lives of those around me as I strive to be Faithful In Serving Him (FISH!)

I was busy preparing a music tape for my trip to Namibia and I came across two songs by a band called Skillet and some of the hardest hitting lyrics that every time I hear them make me think... I won't write out the full songs but these lines come from the songs "I can" and "My Beautiful Robe" off the 'Skillet' titled album (1996)

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"I am feeling under-rooted, feeling undermined
Can this grace of God cover me this time?
When I feel the pain I know why I feel strange
When I hear the rooster crow, I am ashamed

Jesus on the cross and this cross upon my back
I have learned to submit then I whine about my lack
Sometimes I drop my cross, deserve a little rest
That's when I come to You and I nail your feet and your wrist

Do You really love my soul, even after I hated You?
Do You really know my name, can I really come to You?
Are You really more faithful than the changing of the seasons and the morning sun?
Do You really know my name, can I really come to You?

I can I can I can I can
I don't care if the rooster crows, if the rooster crows, if the rooster crows I can"

"I was crucified with Christ but how come I'm not dead?
God gave me a cross but I made my own instead

I cut down a tree
I nailed myself to the wood
I screamed in agony
Cos the glory wasn't so good

I fell to my knees and I remember
The words of God pierced so hard,
"Your righteousness is like filthy rags"
And I fell to my knees
And said, "God, my filthy robe"

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I used a large portion of both songs just to create some kind of context and I hope the meaning comes through what I've written (cos it's not the full song in either case) but the two lines that particularly hit me are:

"Jesus on the cross and this cross upon my back I have learned to submit then I whine about my lack
Sometimes I drop my cross, deserve a little rest
That's when I come to You and I nail your feet and your wrist"

"I was crucified with Christ but how come I'm not dead?
God gave me a cross but I made my own instead"

I've been reading this book called 'Mind over Media' by Focus on the Family and it really calls you to focus on the things that you take in, specifically in terms of movies, music, books, computer games, magazines, internet and television.

And those are the areas that I am specifically focussing on this coming year and I really encourage and challenge you to at least give it a thought. Because that is really where the devil is having a field day in the world and TOO OFTEN in the lives of Christians...

Purity is NOT outdated. It is a command from God and is something we as Christians need to seriously consider:

"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things."
[Philippians 4:8]

If you call yourself a Christian then as Skillet says in so many areas of your life "How come aren't you dead?" Is it maybe because you choose to wear your own choice of cross rather than the one Jesus has called you to?

VERY harsh question... but it NEEDS to be asked?

Have you died to the kind of tv you watch?
Have you died to the kind of music you listen to?
Have you died to the books and magazines you read?
Have you died to the types of computer games you play?
Have you died to the sites you visit on the internet?

If not, then you may struggle to say with complete conviction that Jesus is Lord of your life... and that means that you just might have some work to do... I know I have.

Well don't let me keep you from it... but also don't just turn this off, delete or file it and go back to the old way of doing things... you want this year to be different? You have to be different. God is the one who doesn't change.

Guys, lukewarm is out this year... join me in making a stand for your own PHD - Purity, Holiness and Discipline... you won't get a piece of paper at the end of the year or a new title, but maybe you'll at least start to deserve the one you have...

 

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