Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma. But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. (Ephesians 5:1–5)
Our Lord and Master, we live in a world that’s lost its way. We are impacted by it, we are influenced by it, and we are sometimes intimidated by it. So twisted is the thinking of society around us in this global atmosphere that it is easy to begin thinking we are the weird ones and the world is thinking straight. Help us each day to put that in proper order.
Purify us, Father. In the process, guard us from foolish pride and from a super-pious personality which comes across as fanatical, a personality disconnected from the real world. It’s a tightrope we walk, Father. And we need Your help to keep our balance, so that we don’t turn off our neighbors with too much Scripture-quoting or turn away a partner in life because of too much rigid preaching and not enough reasonable living. Help us know how to relate in the business world without compromising solid ethics and integrity. Make us people of our word in the details of life—like keeping our promises, like paying our bills, like respecting others, like cleaning up our foul language.
We need help, Lord, to overcome the bad habits of the past, to resist wanting to be liked rather than doing what’s right, to be popular instead of being pure. And, Lord, in the process, may we continue to be easy to live with, winsome—like Christ—who was the most attractive individual who ever cast a shadow on earth.
In great measure, Father, we trust You. For Jesus’s sake. Amen.