Monday, November 2, 2009

The Practice of Godliness

I started a new book and it is really taking me on a heavenly ride. Jerry Bridges...why am I just discovering his work? I wish I had read this stuff when I was a "baby Christian".

Here's the question....if God expects us to be holy because He is holy (1 Peter 1:16) then why is it so hard? Why do we struggle and fail daily? Why is it so much easier to live in the world and of the world?

A few Sunday's ago our pastor referenced the "godly women" who faithfully pray at the church one night a week and the difference the ministry team can tell because of this. Well, that's my friend and I...the "godly women" that he referenced. My heart skipped a beat. ? Godly? He obviously doesn't see my many failures each day that makes me anything but godly. It is a cherished time spent on our knees for our church but by no means would label us as "godly".

Again, It motivated me. It humbled me. I immediately thank God for the comment and asked Him to transform me into that godly women. Though He could wave that magic wand if He wanted to, reality is that I have to be actively seeking it... "devotion in action" as Dr. Bridges reference.

"It is both the privilege and duty of every Christan to pursue godliness, to train himself to be godly, to study diligently the practice of godliness." (pp.14)

Dr. Bridges goes on to point out that "devotion is not an activity; it is an attitude toward God". Within this attitude are three essential elements: (1) the fear of God, (2)the love of God, and (3) the desire for God. And i all starts with one big descriptive word...humility. OUCH.

To be humble is to be sensitive to the needs of others and to put those first. It involves an attitude and heart of submission. But most importantly, it involves reverencing God in everything. Reverencing God and acknowledging Him for who He is in your life and all that you have as coming from Him. It is being thankful in the good times and grateful for the learning from the bad times.

Being ruined has humbled me but not as much as the majesty of God and the effect my sin has on Him. This week, each day, I plan to re-read Dr. Bridges chapter on humility and meditate on scripture which I found on It will probably be a tough week but hopefully, I will be one step closer to godliness.

Humility will prevent us from being the stale Christain God revealed to Isaiah in chapter 6, verses 5-10

[5]Then I said: Woe is me, for I am ruined, because I am a man of unclean lips and live among a people of unclean lips, [and] because my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of Hosts. [6] Then one of the seraphim flew to me, and in his hand was a glowing coal that he had taken from the altar with tongs. [7] He touched my mouth [with it] and said: Now that this has touched your lips, your wickedness is removed, and your sin is atoned for. [8] Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying: Who should I send? Who will go for Us? I said: Here I am. Send me. [9] And He replied: Go! Say to these people: Keep listening, but do not understand; keep looking, but do not perceive. [10] Dull the minds of these people; deafen their ears and blind their eyes; otherwise they might see with their eyes and hear with their ears, understand with their minds, turn back, and be healed.

"God sends Isaiah to foretell the ruin of his people. Many hear the sound of God's word, but do not feel the power of it. God sometimes, in righteous judgment, gives men up to blindness of mind, because they will not receive the truth in the love of it. But no humble inquirer after Christ, need to fear this awful doom, which is a spiritual judgment on those who will still hold fast their sins. Let every one pray for the enlightening of the Holy Spirit, that he may perceive how precious are the Divine mercies, by which alone we are secured against this dreadful danger. Yet the Lord would preserve a remnant, like the tenth, holy to him. And blessed be God, he still preserves his church; however professors or visible churches may be lopped off as unfruitful, the holy seed will shoot forth, from whom all the numerous branches of righteousness shall arise. " ~ Matthew Henry's Commentary

May we all humble our way of thinking, our way of feeling, our way of being so that we can truly experience the power of God in our lives. May we be a stamp of His goodness to the lost.

Godliness. Humility. All for His honor.

In His Graces~Pamela

If you choose to read this book, I strongly recomment you first read "The Pursuit of Holiness" by Dr. Bridges.