So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus.
(Romans 6:11 – ESV)
(Romans 6:11 – ESV)
There is a difference, perhaps subtle, but a difference nonetheless, between recognition and realization. Most would see these terms as synonyms for the same thing, namely that they both mean to come to an awareness of something. However, for the purposes of our discussion, and for clarity in our understanding of how sanctification works, we point out the process of progress using these two words. This distinction will help us tremendously as we move along the process in our progress toward sanctification. Conversely, the lack of a distinction in these terms can cause a hindrance in our growth. We misunderstand what recognition means, and therefore we fail to achieve realization in our lives.
As we come to know something, in that we become aware of its reality, its presence, and its importance, we can be said to recognize it. Now when we go from a mere awareness to a more full understanding, or apprehension, what we are doing is realizing something. To recognize something is to spot it, to realize something is to capture it.
See the difference? Now lets make it real, shall we?
Again, there is a difference between the two and it can be stated thus. Recognizing something is about seeing it. Identifying, acknowledging something. Realizing is about being it. We internalize it, we make it real to our situation, and we cash in on the idea.
For example, we go from recognizing there is sin in the world and that you have sinned into realizing that you are a sinner when you find yourself doing it in practice. We go from recognizing that Jesus paid for your sins to realizing it in the practice of sanctification in your life. You see a verse many times, read it and even meditate on it, but then one day the Holy Spirit applies that verse because it jumps out at you and you see it for your life, it becomes real.
In some ways, the difference between recognition and realization is the difference between the indicative and imperative. You know what the Word says about you, and then you become what it means for you. If you can recognize the fact, then you can realize the future.
Let's go from seeing it to being it.