I’ve tried several times to respond to your blog post about godliness, but the words never seem to come, never seem to be quite what I wanted to say. So instead of filling up your blog with my opinions I’m posting my thoughts here, knowing you read my blog and knowing I can say whatever I want here.

You say I opened a can of worms Sunday night at our Bible study because I wanted to know what this “eclectic group of young adults” thought about godliness. I’m sorry, that wasn’t my intention. My intentions were to just get people thinking about godliness and how it should impact our lives. And you are right, everyone seem to be looking for a definition that was measurable. But that is understandable – everything we do in life seems to have some measurable quality to it, why not in the spiritual realm? But I think we get off on the measure because we use others as our standard, and we measure others by our standards. But the true measure should be Jesus Christ. How do I stack up against Him? Well of course, I stink. But He is still my standard. Our measure should be: “How am I improving compared to how I was yesterday, or even an hour ago?” When I start comparing myself to other believers I can quickly become defeated and frustrated. It’s like running. When I compare my 15 minute mile to those who can run a 5 or 6 minute mile I could get really frustrated with running. But when I realize what I can do now (based on my weight and level of fitness) I’m ok with my 15 minute mile. But how excited I am when I run a 14 ½ minute mile; and then a 14 minute mile. I probably will never run a 5 or 6 minute mile, but I’m ok with that. I know what I’m capable of at the moment and I’m at peace with that. Not satisfied, so I push myself a little harder, but at peace with where I am at the moment.

You also said that you thought our sinful nature makes being godly “unattainable.” I must disagree with you. I think our sin nature keeps us from being perfect, but it doesn’t keep us from being godly. I think we are godly people just because our hope is in the Living God, who is alive in us because of what Jesus did. I think we often make perfection and godliness synonymous, and that is a mistake. Godliness is an attitude, a frame of mind, a way of looking at God, the world, and those we come into contact with. Godliness is our way of representing God to the world, and I think godly people don’t even know they are godly. Some days we are godlier than other days. But we should be seeking and striving to be, as Paul said in the scripture we looked at, an “example of godliness in our speech, conduct, faith, love and purity.” Most days I fail in at least one of those areas if not all of them. But I keeping pressing on, knowing “God has given me everything I need for life and godliness.” I’m not sure I could handle perfection, but I know I can handle godliness. I like your question: “Are Godly people just normal folks who occasionally screw up as they search for truth?” Yes. I see godliness in a lot of people, mostly doing small things they think aren’t all that godly. I see the spark of godliness in all of us, whether we recognize it or not. I see godliness in you T, even in the midst of your “rebellion and cynicism.” Don’t quit trying T; the payoff will be worth it.

B~

Addendum: Becky sent me this quote in an email. It’s Oswald Chambers for Sept. 19th.

The expression of Christian character is not good doing, but God likeness. If the Spirit of God has transformed you within, you will exhibit Divine characteristics in your life, not good human characteristics. God’s life in us expresses itself as God’s life, not as human life trying to be godly. The secret of a Christian is that the supernatural is made natural in him by the grace of God, and the experience of this works out in the practical details of life, not in times of communion with God.

 

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