Purity from imperfect people, by the Spirit

James 4:1-3
"Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? 2 You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures."

Randy Booth

“There is a sense in which it is appropriate for us to be private people. Unfortunately, this can become an excuse for a person to remain “private” when, in fact, God requires them to be public. Worship, fellowship, service, prayer, confession, labor, and much more demand a sort of public exposure. In genuine community we must be seen, and we must be seen beyond the veneer. We all possess many insecurities and we all spend a great deal of our time and energy covering up those insecurities. Yet the work of sanctification involves changing, growing and maturing i.e., becoming like Jesus Christ. This is how we overcome those insecurities. It has pleased God to place His people in local churches along with other redeemed sinners to work that work. In addition to the word and sacraments, the Holy Spirit uses real people to affect those changes; they are His instruments. It’s in the day-to-day real life relationships that our faith is tested, we are instructed, and we have the opportunities to put our faith into practice; and we know that practice makes perfect.”

Thus far pastor Booth, I would add that it is very easy to take those real people God uses to help us change, and begrudge or blame them, when living close to them points out our faults. We need Christ’s Spirit to keep us to the task of purging away our own ungodly desires.


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