Holiness: by doing ordinary things with extraordinary love.
1Thess 4:3 “This is the will of God: your sanctification.” Our purpose in life should be to make it to heaven. To be with God. Forever. With all others who make it to heaven.
There are practical means by which we can strive for holiness in our everyday life. We don’t have to become a deacon or a missionary. By practicing virtues at work, at home, and at play we can become more holy. In fact, this is what God is calling most of to do – to become more holy in our everyday lives whether we are in client meetings, changing diapers, driving to work, or mowing the lawn.
1. 1 Peter 1:14-16
As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”
2. 2 Corinthians 7:1
Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.
3. 1 Thessalonians 4:7
For God has not called us for impurity, but in holiness.
4. Leviticus 20:26
You shall be holy to me, for I the Lord am holy and have separated you from the peoples, that you should be mine.
5. Isaiah 35:8
And a highway shall be there, and it shall be called the Way of Holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it. It shall belong to those who walk on the way; even if they are fools, they shall not go astray.
6. Romans 12:1
I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
“All Christians in any state or walk of life are called to the fullness of Christian life and to the perfection of charity.”65 All are called to holiness: “Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”66 (915, 2545, 825)
The way of perfection passes by way of the Cross. There is no holiness without renunciation and spiritual battle.68 Spiritual progress entails the ascesis and mortification that gradually lead to living in the peace and joy of the Beatitudes: (407, 2725, 1438)
Sanctifying grace makes us “pleasing to God.” Charisms, special graces of the Holy Spirit, are oriented to sanctifying grace and are intended for the common good of the Church. God also acts through many actual graces, to be distinguished from habitual grace which is permanent in us.
Small Group Questions
1. What things about your job or family life do find the most mundane?
2. What things at home or at work (or at church) the most frustrating?
3. How can you turn those mundane and frustrating times into the most sanctifying acts of love?
1. “Introduction to the Devout Life” by St. Francis deSales
3. “Holiness for Everyone” by St Josemaria Escriva
4. “Do Ordinary things with extraordinary love.” Saint Therese of Lisieux