A third requirement to be called a servant of Jesus is “God uses clean vessels to do His work.”
2 Timothy 2:19-22. . . Everyone who names the name of the Lord is to abstain from wickedness. . . if anyone cleanses himself he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified, useful to the Master, prepared for every good work. Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness,
“Useful to the Master” is the phrase that I want to describe me more than anything else. How does a person become “useful” to Jesus? Well, the passage tells us, “Abstain from wickedness, ” “cleanse himself, ” “flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness.”
To put it another way, “The Lord’s bond-servant must be growing in character and righteousness.” I don’t have to, in order to get into heaven, but if I want to be one of the “appointed ones” who Jesus has chosen to do His work, it is mandatory.
A problem we have in this area is that we let the world define for us what is righteous living. “Slightly better than the world“ is most believers definition of acceptable holiness before God. The problem is that the world is going backwards very fast in the area of righteousness. Servants of Jesus are pressing on to become like Him in character and behavior, Jesus is our standard and model.
Growth requires honest, very humble, diligent self-examination in order to find our character weaknesses, blind spots, and sin habits. Once discovered we confess or admit that indeed that is who we are and that is how we act, we repent, and we strategize a plan for growth and we pursue it.
On this present archery hunting trip to the Steens Mts I slept in twice instead of getting up and going hunting. I used the phrase, “well, I am here to enjoy myself, not kill myself.” The truth is that more and more I have been taking the easy way and using my age and my Parkinson’s as an excuse, when the real reason is that I have let myself get wimpy in self-control. I have honestly examined myself and truly believe that I can do much better than I am presently doing and I have a plan to make it happen. I have given my plan to Jesus and I have asked Him to help me make it reality so that I can serve and glorify Him more.