I hate dirt. I know we tell children, “Don’t say the word hate. Say ‘dislike greatly.'” But I’m sorry, I hate dirt. Well, I don’t mind getting dirty; I hate staying dirty. After a long day of hot, sweaty, dirty work the first thing I want to do is clean up. A cool shower and fresh clean clothes put the final touches on a good day. It makes me feel revived, refreshed, new again. This is a picture of what the Bible calls Sanctification. A big word with a loaded meaning.
Sanctification is the progressive work of God to separate a believer from sin to God Himself. He transforms our total life experience toward holiness and purity. God’s process of cleaning up individuals from the dirt of sin to holiness and purity is called sanctification. This is a process that occurs over our entire lives and is complete when we step into heaven. It’s a process of the Holy Spirit. “ . . . God chose you as firstfruits to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.” 2 Thessalonians 2:13
While sanctification is the process that God works out in the life of every believer, there is also a process He calls us to follow in our own lives. I call this: count/ reckon/accept as truth.
“Count yourselves dead to sin” Romans 6:11. The verb implies a continues action … keep on counting yourself as dead to sin. Reckon/Yield “Do not offer the parts of your body as instruments of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as an instrument of righteousness.” Romans 6:13 Accept as truth that God has made us to be instruments of righteousness. Sell out to righteousness.
“But thanks be to God that, though you used to be slaves to sin, you have come to obey from your heart the pattern of teaching that has now claimed your allegiance. You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness.” Romans 6:17–18
Be patient – God’s not through with any of us yet. We’re all works in progress.
“being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6
“Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:2–3
Ruth Graham, the wife of evangelist Billy Graham, had this quote written on her head stone when she died, –
“End of construction. Thank you for your patience.”
God is in the process of cleaning us up daily. It’s a life long process so maybe we can be patient when we think someone else needs to have their clean the dirt off. Watch out, God might be getting ready to clean you up first.