Whether we Christians realize it or not, one of our primary purposes is to consecrate the world to Jesus. But what does to consecrate even mean? Marriages are consecrated through a holy act of love. Bread and wine are consecrated and transformed into the body and blood of Jesus. Consecration happens when God takes something ordinary and makes it holy. In order to better understand our practical role as Christians on this earth, I want to study how we can be instruments of consecration. How do we take what has been desecrated by the fall of man and transform it into what is sacred?
As I learn more about the word consecration, I've found that inside the word resounds a protective sense, a deep resilience, like sentinels on guard. Does not God protect his consecrated ones with a great array of heavenly hosts? To see this word in a defensive sense strengthens our faith, for as we are consecrated into the Lord, he protects his children at all cost—even at the cost of his own life.
As discussed previously, consecration is an act of God where he makes holy or sacred that which has become profane. It's important to emphasize that even our sins, selfishness and wrongdoings can be cleansed through Christ. Jesus said, "Behold, I am making all things new!" (Revelation 21:5) But how does God transform our sins into what is holy?
My wife and I have visited so many churches over the years, some with impeccable doctrine and beautiful liturgy. I personally (without my wife) have been going to one particular church for three years now that fits those impeccable characteristics, yet amazingly, I feel that if I was to suddenly stop going tomorrow, I'm not sure if anyone would even notice! Similarly, my family and I attended one particular church for two years. Eventually we decided to move on to another church, and guess what? Not one single person called us and let us know that they were sorry to see us go. I even wrote the pastors to tell them we were moving on with a kind letter, and they didn't even respond. Yes, it is astonishing.
We are all bound together in our sin. Rarely do we understand the simple truth to this fact and the vast ramifications. As a member of the family of man I am spiritually and physically connected to all that has happened, is happening, and will happen behind doors, in prison, in the theater of war. I am connected to all man's sin in my bloodline with Adam. Our self-absorbed, inward-looking nature is affected by and affects all of humanity. But this, we Christians know. However, despite how righteous I think I am, I'm still connected in a real way to the whole, and in being so, I am no more righteous and holy than the worst of humanity. However, God has provided a means for escape: forgiveness.
In recent weeks I've had a terrible time as a substitute teacher. None of my 'tricks' seem to be working. It's my personal policy not to yell at students and to be patient. I also try to enjoy the day and bring joy into the students' lives. But recently, after an exhausting day of trying to maintain barely a thread of order, I'll drive home from elementary school feeling incompetent with a splitting headache. I wonder, "Is it worth it for me to do this work?"
Jesus responds to me, "Yes, it is worth it. This is how you help Me consecrate the world."