Do you ever “envy” sinners? Solomon’s advice falls on many deaf ears, because we are so inculturated that we do not even know that we envy the wickedness in it. We have taught our newer generations that friendship with the world is normal in Christianity. If you want to live together before marriage, then go for it. If you want to use profanity like a sailor, then that is your choice. If you want to wear revealing clothes, then you be you and enjoy. Is that really what the Christian life is all about? Is it just fire insurance based upon a grace that will forgive us when we sin? Holiness is an “old” word in many people’s opinion, but it is found throughout the Scriptures, and it means “set apart.” God does not want us to emulate the world, He wants us to win it by being different; by showing the world a whole new possibility for life. We are not different when the rate of teen pregnancy and divorce in the church continue to equal that of the world around us. We have no impact and no authority, because we are not holy. God has incredible plans for each of His kids, but He also has some expectations for us. He is not okay with kids who live like the culture around them and then show up to church too tired to worship or so engrossed in their own drama that they never invite a friend to join them. The church needs to step up her game and that starts with holiness. We must stop envying the world around us and start living by the Spirit inside of us. We must stand out from the culture and reveal a new way of life that is far more peaceful and filled with joy. This is the life God has called us to live!

Help me, Lord, to live a holy life fully dedicated to You alone. Help me to stop envying the culture around me and to start listening to the One who lives inside me.