“For the Lord has not called us to impurity but to sanctification.” (1 Thessalonians 4:7)
Far too often the gospel has been presented as just a “just as I am” proposition. We tell unbelievers, “God loves you and wants to give you eternal life. He accepts you just as you are.” That is the truth, and it’s an absolute truth. But it is not the whole of the story. This truth is sometimes interpreted, “This is great! I can stay just as I am and have eternal life.” Even if such a thought does not come to mind, the concept can still become a lifestyle reality.
Here is the greater truth: You can come to know the Lord just as you are, but the Lord will not leave you where you are. That is what Paul said to the Thessalonians: “For the Lord has not called us to impurity but to sanctification.” He has not called us to stay where we are in our lifestyle but to move forward, to make progress in our lifestyle. The Holy Spirit works over a period of time to transform us continually into what God wants us to become. “Sanctification” sounds intimidating, but it is simply the process of transformation from what we are to what God is developing us to be, much like a caterpillar becoming a butterfly.
The Holy Spirit’s intent and plan for us is that we allow Him to transform us into people whose lives honor God and bring glory to Him. He desires to ignite the light in us, so that His light can help still more people find their way to God through us.
Lord, We lay our hearts, minds, and lives before You, that Your will may be accomplished in and through us. Amen.