Pursuing Holiness

Discussion in 'Faith, Devotion & Formation' started by anglican74, Feb 28, 2018.

  1. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    HI everyone,
    This has been on my mind a lot lately

    How it is to be holy, what we do to pursue holiness, and living in that mindset

    Thus especially in this season of Lent I am most curious what is on your mind with regards to this, and what little things you may be doing to pursue holiness, to give up attachment to the world, and cleave closer to God


    Thanks for your insights everyone!
     
  2. PotterMcKinney

    PotterMcKinney Active Member Typist Anglican

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    This is just one perspective you may find, but this is how I tend to think of it.

    It is important to remember that what makes something holy is God. And we are appointed to become holy by becoming "partakers of the divine nature," or as Augustine put it, becoming by grace what Jesus is by nature. To do so, we must put aside all created things, for God is uncreated. We cannot do this by knowledge or deed, but only through divine love. The author of the Theologia Germanica believed that one had to distance themselves from that which is "natural" for it is in many ways a deception and a deceiver, and the Cloud of Unknowing writes that one should place natural, created things, however holy they may be, away from one's mind, for knowledge of anything, holy as it is, will not bring one closer to the Most High God, but pure loving volition. One of the best things to do to achieve holiness in this life, then, is to work increasingly to set oneself aside and let the holy Lord be holy through you. For me, this often approaches almost Buddhist style meditation, but it is nevertheless firmly Christian, alike only in appearance. The Me, My, Mine, and Myself are the strongholds of sin, and must be combated and put in their rightful place. With this in mind, there are lower active deeds, like charity, fasting, and studying the word, there is the higher active/lower contemplative deeds, reading Scripture devotionally, praying deeply as a motion of the heart, partaking of the sacrifice of Christ through the Eucharistic ritual, and like actions, and the higher contemplative life, leaving behind every created thing and being only in love, not knowledge, deed, or self.

    Hopefully this could help.
     
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  3. Shane R

    Shane R Active Member

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    I am reviewing and editing a short book on this very topic by a recently elevated ACNA priest. I believe he is resident in CANA-West. His background is Methodist and he seems to still hold to the idea of 'entire sanctification.' I do not object to that, and believe it is a Protestant twist on the Orthodox position. I haven't finished the booklet yet.
     
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  4. Cameron

    Cameron Active Member

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    I think we can hold a lot of what Wesley writes in high esteem. His ideas about holiness and sanctification relate highly to the doctrine of 'theosis' which, as stated by @PotterMcKinney above, is what holiness and sanctification achieves.
     
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  5. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Thank you everyone... What are your tips and strategies in breaking down bad habits

    I have found that habits are the habitual (no pun intended) cause of sin, and thereby an increase in holiness must in some measure come through a perpetual and gradual increase in our holy thoughts, which I find is hard to do in our materialistic and secular age
     
  6. Anglican04

    Anglican04 Active Member Anglican

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    Depends on what habit it is. Regardless, I find that the universal language is prayer. I know it seems cliche, as everyone says this, but people (including me) do not realize the real strength of it. Based on my experiences, these are the types of prayer that help me conquer habits best are as follows:

    1. Meditative Prayer
    2. Mental Prayer
    3. Vocal Prayer

    If you can put together 1 and 3, it is a good combination. 1 and 2 seems like it would take away from the meditation, so I wouldn't use both of those at once.

    Also, you must prepare yourself mentally, self motivation.
     
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  7. PotterMcKinney

    PotterMcKinney Active Member Typist Anglican

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    On a certain level, we need to realize that we can't fight the sins of the body with the body. At best you're just suppressing the outward form of the inward problem. The battle happens in the spirit. Practically, other than what I've told you, I am sorry to say I am not of more help. I've not quite figured out the secret, myself.
     
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  8. Aidan

    Aidan Well-Known Member

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    This is a difficult problem. I agree that prayer will help but practically when tempted to indulge go and occupy yourself with something constructive until the urge dissipates
     
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  9. Anglican04

    Anglican04 Active Member Anglican

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    I agree, but of course this varies on which sin you are tempted to commit. If it is lustful, I think a nice cold shower or playing with a pet, is excellent. In sexual sin, the internet is your worst enemy because of nudity. If it is lying or something, I would suggest meditating on the commandments and some mental prayer. That being said, we are all different, and different things work for different people.

    Here is an excellent podcast by Word and Table concerning temptation.

    https://wordandtable.simplecast.fm/
     
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  10. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Very good food for thought for me on this Sunday
     
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  11. JoeLaughon

    JoeLaughon Active Member Anglican

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    it is not universal but for me idle hands really do make the devil's playground.
     
  12. Cameron

    Cameron Active Member

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    When you have idle hands, it's best to sit in company with heretics. Slap, slap, slap. St Nicholas style.
     
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  13. Aidan

    Aidan Well-Known Member

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    That day may come sooner than you think Cameron.
     
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  14. realdocphil

    realdocphil New Member Anglican

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    I strive(in Christ’s strength) to keep my spirit man strong by staying in the Word and meeting with the Lord first thing each morning om prayer...it’s not the length of it but the quality and try to stay in His presence...I think i’m about half monk or mystic
     
  15. Anne

    Anne Active Member Anglican

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    Structure your inner life and by using outer, incarnate, means. Creating habits with our bodies works its way into our hearts. MP, EP, the same grace said before every meal, delayed meals to make time for other things (eat only when hungry), Lectio Divina scheduled at a regular time, music, a regular hour for reading, and so on....

    This sounds quite monastic and I mean it to. Which isn't to say I don't have fun ;) I enjoy rock music and movies and parties with friends just like the next girl, but as a musician I cannot help but believe in practice. What I make myself do regularly for at least two months or so becomes a habit and soon my heart is singing in rhythm with it all. The rest of life, which is good, falls into place around the structure.
     
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  16. realdocphil

    realdocphil New Member Anglican

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    God thoughts and ideas Ann!
     
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  17. AnglicanTex

    AnglicanTex Member Anglican

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    Amen! I have often told people (and heartily mean it) that the prayer book is what was brought me to Jesus. I've always seen the prayer book as a suggested lifestyle, one that is abundant and disciplined. I have found it is an invaluable tool in shaping the foundation for holiness.
     
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  18. AnglicanUSGirl2

    AnglicanUSGirl2 New Member

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    I know that I'm late to this thread, but here's a thought: I believe one way to draw closer to God is to make sure you're drawing strength from good resources. If someone builds himself up by tearing other people down, criticizing, or comparing his strengths to others' weaknesses, this is a bad source of strength. But if someone builds himself up through reading the Bible, prayer, helping others, and other healthful sources, this is much better for his soul, and will be a more lasting source of strength.
     

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