May the God of peace sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

-1 Thessalonians 5:23

Which part of that verse sounds more appalling? Is it that you would be kept blameless, or that our Lord Jesus Christ is coming?

Sanctification—a fancy way of saying “being holy”—can seem intimidatingly impossible, even if Jesus did tell us to be as perfect as God. You’ve been trying for most of a Lenten season to be devoted, to re-form your life into the shape of some more holiness. But would you say you’ve got it down perfectly? Enough to be seen as blameless, in spirit, soul, and body? At this point in the process, would you like to extend Lent for another 40-or-so days, to keep polishing yourself up for blamelessness?

Maybe this is a good time to celebrate that our Lord Jesus Christ is coming. Not just “coming” in Advent and a Christmas birth. Not just “coming again” to judge the living and the dead. He is also coming to you through his death and resurrection, coming back to you from everything that could’ve separated you. That he wants to come to you, to abide with you through his Holy Spirit—that is what makes you holy.

Come, Lord Jesus. Through my sin, through death, through anything that would separate us. Come, Holy Spirit. Amen

Rev. Nick Utphall, Partner Congregation Pastor