1 Thessalonians 3:13
"May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones."
Today's Prayer Focus
- For the faithful preaching and teaching of God’s Word; in worship, in classes, in small groups, and in our private devotions.
- For the gracious work of the Holy Spirit in our sanctification, forming our hearts and lives more and more into the likeness of the Lord Jesus.
- For our elders, deacons, staff, small group leaders, SPLASH workers, youth leaders, and all who assist us in our journey toward spiritual growth and maturity in Christ.
"The Beauty of Holiness"
The word “holiness” has taken a beating over the years, and has become widely misunderstood and devalued. Too often it has become wrapped up in religious externals, hypocrisy, and self righteousness. Let’s recover the beauty of holiness.
Remember that the fall of mankind into sin was catastrophic. When sin came into the world, it brought with it human cruelty, selfishness, pride and ruin. One way of thinking about holiness is that God is renewing his image in us (Colossians 3:10). He wants to make us new in Christ. Sanctification simply means to be made holy. The Word of God plays a big role in that: “Sanctify them by the truth. Thy word is truth.” (John 17:17) That’s why we pray for sanctifying influences of God’s Word throughout our church.
When we pray for the church to be holy, we are praying that the bride of Christ will be ready for her husband when he returns (Ephesians 5:25-27). Jesus died for our unholiness, and now he wants to make us beautiful for when he comes to claim his bride. As we sing in the hymn, The Church’s One Foundation: “From heaven he came and sought her to be his holy bride; with his own blood he bought her, and for her life he died.”
Mike Tilley is the senior pastor of Lake Baldwin Church, and has lived in Orlando since 1994. He and his wife, Molly, worked with a core group from the Baldwin Park community to plant Lake Baldwin Church in 2006. Mike loves teaching the Bible in a way that relates to real life. In his spare time, Mike enjoys good movies, long dinner with friends, snow skiing, hanging out with his kids and two granddaughters, and travel.