A couple of years ago, I was praying Scriptures of sanctification over my children, my grandchildren, and future generations of Shultzes. Just a few short days into praying, “Lord, sanctify them! Set them apart for you. Make my children holy,” I found myself outside the courthouse in Castle Rock waiting, as one of my sons stood before the judge to receive his punishment for a DUI. Covid restrictions prevented me from going in and standing beside him. That was a long and lonely 3 hours in the car (I’m sure it was a long and lonely 3 hours in the courthouse, as well, but I’ll let him tell his side of the story when he’s ready).
On my side, while I waited, I prayed. And while I prayed, I cried. And while I cried, I stared at the outside of that building shaking my head in disbelief.
Lord, how did we get here? How is this part of our story, of his story? Why, when we cry out for your sanctifying work in his life, is this where he ends up?
And the moment I began to accuse God of not listening and not working, He gently-firmly-quickly reminded me of the truth…
Becky, I work sanctification in courthouses too!
Did He really just say that?
After my initial jaw drop, I realized our Savior’s reminder was a balm to my mama soul. The work of cleansing us, setting us apart, and making us more like Him is His work and it is a lifelong work. When I remember the things I have done, the places I have been, the thoughts I think, I should know that He works sanctification in the most unlikely of places!
When we see our children and our grandchildren make choices that we know do not honor the Lord, we can easily become discouraged and fearful.
I have many more thoughts and a whole lot of Scripture-encouragement on sanctification, but I’ll save those for another day.
For now, just remember where our Lord does His sanctifying work:
In Christian schools
At youth group
At Sunday School
In public schools
In jail cells
In gay bars
We know that the arm of the Lord is not too short to save (Isaiah 59:1), so the arm of the Lord is not too short to sanctify. He is always working to sanctify His people. Always. His saving, healing, restoring, redeeming, chain-breaking, cleansing, holy-making power is at work in the likeliest and the unlikeliest of places.