What You Should Be When You Grow Up
But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”
1 Peter 1:15-16
One of our favorite questions to ask a child is, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” My oldest son wanted to be a “scien-tis-tist.”
Many parents have designs on what they want their children to “be.” I never really thought in terms of a specific vocation for my sons. My primary concern was in regards to their character. I wanted them to “be good.” The rest would take care of itself.
In regards to what we should “be” there is actually a higher expectation that comes from God. God wants us to “be holy.”
Doctrinally there are two categories of holiness. First there is positional holiness. You are made holy by the work of Christ. In Him you are holy. The second category is the practice of holiness, “…be holy in all you do.” God is telling us to “be” who we already are in Christ. You are holy…now act like it. “Be holy.”
The word “holy,” in regard to the believer, means to be set apart for God’s purposes. Holy, sanctify, and saint all come from the same root word. In other words, for the Christian, the emphasis should be on what He wants you to be when you grow up.
When we are young there are behavioral traits of our parents that get on our nerves. My granddaddy always sat at the head of the table, used the same plate, same fork (with one prong missing), and knife (with a broken handle)…for every meal. I was bound and determined that when I was out on my own I would never adopt that behavior. Fortunately, I’ve been able to keep my promise to myself. But…who knows? Maybe someday.
In reality we adopt many of the behavior characteristics of our parents. Have you ever said to your spouse, “You’re acting just like your mother?” The older we get we not only act like them, we actually look like them. Recently my granddaughter put a play wig on my head and took my picture. I was shocked to see that…I look just like my mother.
Our heavenly Father is holy and as His children we are instructed, “Be holy, because I am holy.” As we grow in Christ we will inevitably adopt family traits. Just as a child mimics the behavior of a parent we should seek to mimic the holy behavior of our God.
To “be holy” is to strive for godly behavior in every area of your life. God wants you to pattern your life after Jesus. “But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do.” Jesus is your perfect model for living the Christian life. Learn from His devotion and obedience, His way of forgiveness, His model of standing against temptation, and for what is right. Learn from His compassion, love, and ministry to others.
As a Christian, what do you want to be when you grow up? There really is only one right answer to that question. Your uppermost desire should be to “be holy in all you do.”
Here in January, when goal setting and resolutions are top of mind, is a perfect time to resolve to set your sites on holy living.
Ultimately, the highest compliment you can ever receive is for someone to say, “I can see your Father in you.”
For more on this topic, check out this article: You Can’t Fake Your Way Into Heaven
Reprinted from The Forever Notebook, Book 1 (January – March) Get your copy here: Paperback and eBook/Kindle formats.
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