Take time to be holy, speak often with God. Find rest in him always and feed on his word. Take time to be holy, the world rushes on; much time spend in secret with Jesus alone.
The lyrics of "Take Time to Be Holy" were written about 1882 by William Longstaff, a wealthy Englishman who served as treasurer of the Bethesda Free Chapel in Sunderland, a port city in Northeast England. The hymn was prompted by a sermon William heard on the text, "Be holy, for I am holy." 1 Peter 1:16.
But what does it mean to be holy? Striving to lead a holy life doesn't mean we are perfect - "holier than thou." Rather, we are a set-apart people completely dependent on God's grace. We are made holy in our hearts "... by the power of God, who has saved us and called us to a holy life-not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace." 2 Timothy 1: 8b-9a.
As followers of Jesus Christ, we live under the New Covenant. Jesus died in our place and took our sin upon himself; thus, we are temples where God's Holy Spirit dwells. As the current sermon series has illustrated beautifully, there can be no "holy life" without a thriving connection to God through worship, prayer, and service to others.
The Lord is our strength, our hope, our joy, our peace. As we take time to be holy, spending time with God in prayer, we are changed. As we read God's Word, we are strengthened for what lies ahead.
Paul says we are "called" to a holy life, which implies action on our part. What about you? What do you do each day to purposely and intentionally cultivate a more holy life? What specific ways do you hear God calling you to be set apart for his purposes?
I invite you to "take time to be holy" for the next three minutes and twenty seconds. Click on the link, listen to the beautiful music, and ask God to show you the way.
Prayer for Today
Loving God, show us how to live this holy life to which you call us. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.