I am freshly and profoundly seeing the fullness of Jesus Christ and his love and goodness in John 17, his prayer for his disciples. The twelve and all who would come to faith through their testimony; this includes me and you. The only thing he prayed for that requires our direct response is his prayer for our sanctification in John 17:17. He sanctifies those who surrender themselves to follow him. It’s a process full of moments of encounter that lead to transformation in Christ, by the Holy Spirit, all according to the scripture. Some scriptures that reveal the same process are Romans 12:1-3, 2 Corinthians 3:18, and 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24. This exercise is being shared to complement message at Unite Church on 11th November 2018. https://www.unitechurch.org.nz/all-sermons/2018/11/11/following-jesus-is-pursuing-sanctification
A simple exercise in pursuing holiness by personal engagement with Jesus through the word of God.
1. Settle into your friendship time with Jesus. I find giving thanks and praise for his mercy and goodness the way to do this. It only needs to be for a few seconds.
2. Pray this with me; “Holy Spirit sanctify me with the word of God, separate me from unbelief and fear, and grow faith in Jesus Christ within me. I desire to follow Jesus in sanctification, to obey God, and to grow in holiness as his child.”
3. Read John 17:13-23 or Hebrews 12:1-14. I suggest alternating between these scriptures for a few days.
4. Read through the verses and ‘Listen for the touch/expression of Jesus the living Word’.
- Use this insight as prayer
- Note it in your journal
5. Read through same verses a second time. I find reading slowly and out-loud helpful. It brings my hearing sense into the process.
- Reflect on where the reading touches my life today?
- Note this in your journal and make this your prayer.
- This is where the Holy Spirit convicts and reveals truth, and where our sanctification happens. As the Holy Spirit speaks to our hearts we are invited to respond with repentance and faith. We agree we are wrong and he is right and that we will trust him. I have learnt to love the inner leading of the Spirit, sometimes it’s hard, always it’s humbling; but it’s also full of life and hope.
- His power is in his word spoken into our heart. As Jesus said; “The words I have spoken to you are full of Spirit and life.”
6. Read the same verses a third time, asking what is Jesus inviting me to do. Reflect and complete the following statement.
- I believe the Spirit is leading me to ….
- Add a time, today or this week, to do this by. This is our next step in obeying Jesus.
- Pray the ‘word’ back to God. Remember James 1:22 “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”
Our sanctification is the work of the Holy Spirit as we trust and obey his word; and it will produce good fruit. Give thanks to Our Father for his goodness. It is a precious to hear his words in our heart. We don’t deserve this, it’s his mercy and grace every time.
Thanks for reading and hopefully doing this exercise. I pray for the Holy Spirit to lead you into peace and fill you with joy.
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