Happy Monday friends. I spent the weekend in Dallas helping my sister on the quest to find the perfect wedding dress. I had a fabulous time filled with lots of shopping, amazing restaurants and good conversation. I have to say I was missing my little family pretty bad by the time I got back yesterday afternoon.
I was able to spend my time on my flight working on the breakdown of the beginning of Romans 12. The Lord revealed some pretty cool things with me that I am excited to share with you. Let’s get to it.
Therefore, I urge you brothers in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God– this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good pleasing and perfect will.
Paul begins by instructing us to offer our bodies as living sacrifices. Let’s focus on the word sacrifice. To sacrifice is an act of giving up something valued for the sake of something else regarded as more important or worthy. We are being asked to give up the thing we naturally value most—our body –which encompasses our life, our worldly identity, our personal desires and ambitions. We are called to lay all of that down and give ourselves completely to God as a “spiritual act of worship.” In order to be “holy and pleasing” in God’s sight we must let him be Lord over every area of our life. We can’t hold anything back. We can’t try to keep control over our finances, or our marriage, or our plans for the future. We must have the faith to lay everything down at the feet of Jesus knowing that we can trust Him with everything that we are.
The next verse is one that I meditate on often as I can easily get caught up in worldly patterns. The current of the world is strong and if you aren’t paying attention it is so easy to stop fighting it and just float along. You must transform your mind from worldly thinking to Christ-like thinking to keep yourself in alignment with Him. A mind transformation is not something that happens overnight. We must train our minds because they are the first place the enemy attacks. Each thought must be taken captive and considered to make sure our minds are allowing us to be in God’s will.
When we have fully offered our lives as living sacrifices to God and when we have transformed our minds to be fixed on heavenly not earthly realities, we will be able to see the areas God has opened our eyes to. This is when His will for us will be revealed. Disclaimer: He will not give us His will for our entire lives all in one easy to read guide. That is not how God works. If we knew the whole big picture plan we would be so overwhelmed by the magnitude and magnificence of it that we would lost in how to even begin. God knows better, He will give it to us bit-by-bit and day-by-day. We will be able to follow His will if we remember to abide in His strength and not our own. I just love the description of His will; good, pleasing and perfect. Nothing in this world can be described like that.
I am far from a being the perfect example of a living sacrifice and transformed mind, but I press on in my efforts to become holy and pleasing in God’s sight. I pray to fully know his good, pleasing and perfect will. He is so good and so loving. He cares so deeply for you and for me. I hope you are as encouraged as I am by these instructions and the promise of a will God has perfectly planned for you.
Be Blessed – Tatum