Every once in a while we have the opportunity to both refresh and grow at the same time. This past week was one of those times for me. I spent the week at Salvation Army Officer's Councils which would in and of itself give the impression that we were preparing for war. And in the strictest sense of the word, we were. You see we understand that we " do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places." (Ephesians 6:12) And because we understand that we prepare for the battle.
Time was spent rediscovering holiness and discipleship, without both of which, we are powerless against the enemy of our souls. I find it very difficult to live the life of a disciple, though, without first fitting into a life of holiness. God is holy and so expects holiness from his people. (1Peter 1:16) And what I had reaffirmed this week is that our personal holiness is only made possible by the presence of God.
When God told Moses to take off his shoes because he stood on holy ground, the ground had been made holy by the presence of God, and nothing else. I strive for His presence in my life and reach out for His holiness, not my own. He is able to make me holy and there is no other way to achieve it. No rituals, no nothing can bring me into His presence but if He is present with me at all times, then His holiness remains with me at all times and because of this, I am made holy. I don't believe that holiness in this sense means that we are "set apart" but rather that we are touched by the Lord God of heaven and made holy by that touch.
What an awesome thing it is to stand before the creator and be able to both speak to Him and to hear His voice. Renewing is necessary and not just once in a while, but every day so that we come to Him refreshed and alive, able to know that we don't have to wait until the next life to become Holy vessels used by God to do His will. It's a great thing to be used by God, but if we become disciples made holy by His presence in our lives, our use is magnified and He is better able to use our talents for His glory.