Are you holy?
This question was asked by the guest speaker at a conference I attended this past weekend. No one raised their hand. The speaker went on to say that she has asked this same question for many years. No one has ever raised their hand, except for one person. The speaker asked this person why she thought that she was holy. The person replied, “Because God made me that way.”
<Pause for a moment of reflection.>
I wonder why the vast majority of us do not initially answer this question in the affirmative. Is it humility? Or is it a sense of false humility to admit to something that may sound like blasphemy to someone else? Or maybe it is the simple fact that we know that we are sinners, and do not feel that we are worthy enough to be called “holy”?
To be honest, we are not worthy. None of us are. No matter what good we do, it is never enough to pay the price of admission into heaven. The price is way too high for us mere humans. But God thinks we are worthy. He sees something in us that most of us do not. He thinks that each and every one of us is worth it, despite of what we think of ourselves. And moreover, Jesus has paid our price for admission.
<Pause for another moment of reflection.>
Okay, let’s redirect that first question and ask: do you see other people as holy?
Be honest, do you see holiness in others? Perhaps if we rephrased that in its more popular form: do you see Jesus in others?
Do you see Jesus in the people around you? Do you see Him in your pastor or priest? Do you see Him in your family members or friends? Do you see Him in your coworkers or classmates? How about in the person sitting in the car next to you at the traffic light? Or in the homeless person begging on the street corner? Do you see Him in your enemy?
Not sure. What was Jesus’ second commandment?
<Pause for one more moment of reflection.>
Okay, let’s redirect the focus of these questions and ask: does God love everyone?
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This post was initially about my reflection to the first question. The last question was initiated at the weblog called He Lives, and discussion continued at St. Stephen’s Musings (civil), The Homeric Hymn (heated), and at St. Stephen’s Musings again (civil).
It seems to me that these two questions are connected, and even more so, they should have the same answer.