3 Ways to Pursue Purity in ALL Areas of Your Life

05-15-08 © Andrejs Zemdega

05-15-08 © Andrejs Zemdega

“Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise—dwell on these things.”
—Philippians 4:8

Purity can be defined as freedom from contaminants. It can also be defined as innocence.

Dwelling on purity means that you focus on purity, that you let your mind linger on it. It means that for a definite majority of your time, your thoughts are directed toward purity. Your focus isn’t keeping the rules or not doing something. Instead, you choose to center your life around what is pure, true, genuine, righteous, and good. So, how do you do that? Let’s take a look at three areas that will help you pursue purity in all areas of your life.

Avoid Contamination

Have you ever gotten a cup and discovered that it wasn’t quite clean? Ever opened a gallon of milk that smelled sour? What did you do? You probably didn’t gulp down the sour milk or drink from a dirty glass. They weren’t clean or pure; they were contaminated. To avoid the contamination, you probably threw the milk out or picked another, cleaner glass.

As careful as we are with contaminants entering our bodies, many of us have trouble filtering the contaminants that can enter our minds. Think about the movies or television shows you watch. What kind of things do you allow to enter into your mind? How are the lyrics to the music on your playlist? What kind of sites are you viewing on the Internet? How about your interactions on social media? Can these things be described as true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, or commendable?

Establish Boundaries

The scene is set. The prom is over, the car is comfy, and the two of you are alone. What next? Do you go to that secluded place you know, choose to hang out with friends, or simply call it a night? This decision can change the course of your life.

The point is that in the heat of the moment, it is easy to choose the wrong path impulsively. If you have established boundaries beforehand, and adhere to them, you will save yourself from making a tragic mistake.

That truth doesn’t just apply to sexual situations, but to other areas of your life, as well. Purity isn’t just about sex; it’s a way of thinking that affects every part of your life. So, setting boundaries concerning what you will do with friends, what behaviors you expect of yourself, and even what level of honesty and dependability you desire of your reputation will free you from making split-second decisions that have negative consequences.

Take time to think about what boundaries you need to establish in all areas of your life and stick with them. Do you have boundaries in dating? What about negative or destructive behaviors? Do you set boundaries considering how you treat or talk about others? Establishing boundaries may not sound like fun, but the standards you hold can prevent you from making choices that result in negative consequences.

Embrace Structure

Structure . . . who wants structure? Isn’t this the time in your life for fun?

No one enjoys having schedules and rules forced upon them, but some structure in your life is good. Structure requires self-discipline. No one can do it for you. So, embrace structure and take time to regularly fill your mind with good things. Spend time in God’s Word, learning about the honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable, and morally excellent things God has outlined there. Join together with like-minded believers by going to church and helping one another learn, grow, and truly live the Christian life! Spend time with God in prayer, bringing your concerns to Him and listening for Him to answer, as well.

Purity isn’t about what you do or don’t do. It’s a state of mind, a way of life. Pursuing purity means that you’re focusing your mind and every part of your life on what God says is good and right for you. So, avoid contamination, establish boundaries, and embrace structure. These three changes will help you dwell upon whatever is pure.

You can start today by choosing to shut out the contaminants in your life, writing down boundaries you need in your life, getting real concerning your church and your youth group, and beginning a regular time to meet with God in Bible study and prayer.

This article is excerpted from “Whatever Is Pure” by Kevin Garrett in the April 2013 issue of ec. You can get your subscription here:

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