In Exodus 29, God promises to sanctify the tabernacle by His glory. It is a beautiful picture of the holy God condescending to be among His people – covenanting to dwell (literally make His home) among them and be their God. I don’t know about you, but, for me, this inspires visions of majestic scenes. I like to try to picture what it would look like for God to mark the tabernacle by His glory. God is the author of truth, beauty, and goodness. Anything lovely or praiseworthy is in existence because of Him. His glory in the tabernacle had to be beyond description and clearly beyond my imagination.

As His people, I think God sometimes graciously allows us to see He is working to mark us with His glory as He sanctifies us.

Sanctification is the continual process of refinement that God uses to shape and mold us more into the likeness of His Son here on earth. Thankfully, it is a deposit of future work of grace in us – the promise that He will let us live with Him eternally, enjoying Him.

But, what does that look like in real life: in the alarm clock, screaming children, four cups of coffee, 280 traffic reality of daily life?

In my imagination, sanctification should look like winning the big game and having all of your buddies hoist you up on their shoulders and carry you across the football field. Think Rudy. Game-winner. It’s a beautiful moment. We’re being molded into the image of God. It’s glorious. Right?

But, if I’m honest, more often than not, in my life sanctification feels decidedly more like weakness than strength and more like struggle than success.

At the risk of being dramatic, sanctification can often feel like those times that you nearly trip down the stairs, tumbling forward, trying to get your feet under you – never actually falling, but most definitely flailing.

Speaking of flailing, I have recently started going to a fitness class. Saying that I am not an athletic person is an understatement. My first foray into this class must have looked a lot like Bambi’s first steps, in a word: wobbly. Throughout the class, the instructors walk around, correcting, instructing, and giving encouragement. On the first day of class, as I’m standing there, literally shaking, the instructor walks by and says, “We work for the shake. The shake is where the change happens.”

At that specific moment, I must admit, I wasn’t particularly spurred on by that mantra, as sweat dripped down my face. But, it gives me pause when thinking about sanctification.

Often the circumstances that God is using to shape me more into the likeness of His son don’t look like what I thought they would or as I might have hoped. I become quickly frustrated in times of sanctification because I don’t quickly “get” the lesson I’m supposed to learn or things may feel painful. But, I am slowly learning that it is not about my living up to the challenge of sanctification, trying to prove that I can do it.

The truth is, I can’t do it.

The truth is that sanctification is allowing God to breathe real life into my fleshly existence. And reality is that this process should cause conflict and pain because God is supremely holy and I am not.

But, He has promised to make me like Him.

So, when I feel weak or frustrated in moments of refinement, the Father is teaching me to trust His character and ask Him for help – reassuring me that He knows how frail I am and doesn’t expect perfection. He is training me to embrace the process. He is showing me that there is great value in the wrestling of sanctification and it’s not about me looking poised or being strong, but Him being displayed as strong and glorious. I’m working to rest in the place of dependence and happily be who God has made me to be in that. To wholeheartedly agree with the economy of God that calls weakness gain. To be grateful for my insufficiency and the fullness of His strength.



Be encouraged with me. Let’s all lean into the shake and trust Him for the change.Sarah Doss is a Communications Associate here at The Church at Brook Hills. She has been a member of the Faith Family since 2011. In her spare time she leads a college freshman girls small group, enjoys travel, exploring the hidden gems of the Magic City, and a good book or a quality coffee talk.