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To be diligent and desperate for Jesus is pursuing holiness with all your heart as you become more Christlike. Are you desperate for Jesus?
As you look ahead to a new year, you might be feeling hopeless in your pursuit of God because of all the things that happened in the last year. This year is barely out-of-the-gate and there’s the potential for our freedoms and liberties to be rapidly shattered.
I want to put my head in the sand.
It makes me feel:
And generally, as if God has forgotten that we love peace and happiness and would love to go back to the way it was a year ago!
How are you to pursue God like never before when your life might look bleaker than at any other time. Sure there were times in history that were worse than anything you’ve ever know . . . but THIS is what you know!
I clearly have no idea how this year (or the next) will pan out but I do know that NOW is the time to cry out to God!
God cares more than you will ever know. More than ever He wants you to be diligent and desperate for Jesus!
Through the Holy Spirit, God wants to fulfill the deep longing to grow closer to Jesus. If you don’t exactly have that special longing, that is perfectly fine. Pray that God will stir your heart for a longing that’s greater than anything you’ve ever experienced. He would be more than happy to answer a prayer like that!
Two Kinds of Holiness
There is one kind of holiness that conforms to an outward appearance and actions that reflect self not Christ.
Do you remember the Pharisees? They had that kind of holiness. They had no idea that their holiness wasn’t genuine. What a shock at the end of their lives!
How is that kind of holiness reflected these days?
One way is how I used to do holiness. Yes ‘do!’ I actually loved God with all my heart and thought I was doing things the way the Bible taught me. I had no intention of not really being holy. I was misled by articles, books, and videos. It was a whole mindset and pursuit of God that was reflected outwardly.
I wore dresses all. of. the. time. I read all of the verses in the Bible that backed up how a woman was to dress and how her relationship with her husband should be.
I thought I was right.
It wasn’t the Bible that was wrong.
I had not always worn dresses but wanted to follow Him with all my heart. I thought this was part of doing that!
My heart was desperate for God but in that desperation, I ended up with the wrong attitude. An attitude that how I was living my life was the only right way. My heart was filled with pride.
I have seen so many people ‘fall’ from the Lord because they were basing their diligence and desperation on the outward appearance.
You need a heart of diligence that is desperate for Jesus.
Not diligence after a lifestyle that reflects holiness.
Holiness is because Jesus has given you grace and is living IN and THROUGH your life. Your life is lost in Christ!
A Heart of Diligence
You cannot be holy because of ANYTHING that you DO!
If that were possible, it wouldn’t have been necessary for Jesus to die on the cross for your sins.
Diligence is not something that purses a certain style of dress. A Pharisee had to have all his clothing just right. He needed the Scriptures to be hanging from his forehead and he had to do everything just right all week and not do anything on the Sabbath. He had all sorts of rules to follow.
It’s kind of embarrassing for me to tell you that I ever wore a dress all of the time. I painted in a dress, rode a bike in a dress, I cared for our rabbits in the barn in a dress. For several years, I wore a dress for everything. There was nothing that I couldn’t do in a dress.
I was diligent and desperate for Jesus. I was seeking after Him.
But something was so totally missing.
I watched as our pastor fell deep into sin.
I watched as others also fell far away from the Lord.
I’m only sharing this with you hoping that it provides you with a vivid example of the difference between holiness that lacks grace and holiness that is desperate in the pursuit of God.
True holiness is not outward but inward in the heart.
Holiness is a heart of desperation for Jesus that is unquenchable until He comes and fills you inwardly with His holiness.
Struggling to be Holy
For years I have passionately lived the mom-life but it hasn’t been easy. I’ve struggled to keep all the plates spinning.
The mom-life is hard. It exposes all the cracks in my personality and the sin that so easily entangles me.
My anger (that’s emotions)
When you’re a mom of cute little heathens it brings out the worst. I learned to see mySELF for who I truly am.
I learned how desperately I needed Jesus!
Desperate for Jesus
No Christian mom drifts into holiness, your flesh is too weak, the devil is out to ‘get’ you, and the world is too alluring.
Being desperate for Jesus is more than simply reading your Bible intentionally, praying with devotion, and journaling about what you read.
A growing Christian mom’s life hums with actively pursuing God. It takes effort.
It means that you don’t read your Bible whenever you get around to it. You figure out what will work with your season of life so you can “meditate day and night.”
When my kids were little, I read it very early in the morning or as soon as I got the chance.
Sometimes I read it aloud at breakfast because that was the only time available.
When I took care of my twin grandbabies 24/7 I would read it in the middle of the night when I was tandem feeding both of them. When there is a will, there is a way.
Being diligent and desperate for Jesus takes an effort that takes energy.
When you read even a small portion of Scripture early in the day, you can take Jesus with you in whatever you do.
- Meditate day and night! (Psalm 1:2)
- Thinking over God’s Word! (2 Timothy 2:7)
- Attending to the Word! (Proverbs 2:2)
- Hiding the Word in your heart! (Psalm 119:11)
- Continue steadfastly in prayer! (Colossians 4:2)
“As for me, I have set my King on Zion, my holy hill.” Psalm 1:6
When you are diligently desperate for Jesus you are striving after Him because you want to be filled!
I can’t lie. Mom-life is hard much of the time. It can drive you to desperation and make you feel hopeless.
This isn’t entirely a bad thing because hopelessness can drive you to desperation for Jesus.
If you are feeling hopeless, leave me a comment below so I can add you to a prayer list.
Don’t struggle alone. Fellowship is wonderful because we can lift each other’s arms up as we pray for one another.
Lord, Show Me Jesus!
When you are diligent and desperate for Jesus, the Spirit can lead you to holiness.
If you are going to embrace both of these postures in the coming year, you will need to remember the true meaning of holiness.
It isn’t holiness like the Pharisees demonstrated and neither is it the kind that I had by wearing it on the outside.
To be holy is an inner action of your heart. It is a transformation of your heart as you are drawn closer and closer to Jesus through communion with the Spirit.
Christ is at the center of your search.
All through the coming year, seek Christ with all of your energy. Summon all of your longings, attention, through every single day of this year until you can truly say, Christ, liveth in me!
This is the ultimate goal in diligently and desperately seeking after God with all of your heart.
To become more and more like Christ.
Make your prayer this year to be, “Lord, teach me to be more like Jesus!