Romans 12:1-2, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (NKJV)
I don’t know about you but those are such familiar verses, I remember memorizing them as a child. Sometimes we get too familiar though and we miss out on what God has to say so we need to read it with fresh eyes. In this case, I chose to also put the translation from my Complete Jewish Study Bible ~ it was translated by Messianic (they believe in Jesus) Rabbis who not only know the full meanings of the words but also have insight into the times it was written in so sometimes it gives me a much deeper understanding of what I am reading too.
“I exhort you, therefore, brothers, in view of God’s mercies,(chapter 11 was just talking about the mercy of God) to offer yourselves as a sacrifice, living and set apart for God. This will please Him; it is the logical “Temple worship” for you. In other words, do not let yourselves be conformed to the standards of the world. Instead, keep letting yourselves be transformed by the renewing of your minds; so that you will know what God wants and will agree that what He wants is good, satisfying, and able to succeed.” (TCJSB)
Now after all of that, the main part of these verses that God has really been working on me with is “Renewing our minds”. Regardless of where you are in life ~ on a mountaintop or in the wilderness wondering if you will ever come even remotely close to having a “normal” life again, it is vital to allow God to renew your mind. Sometimes on that mountaintop, it can be too easy to forget who put you there or even that there are any needs in your life, but you always need Him and He wants a deeper relationship with you. He wants to show you so much more about Him so you can share it with others. When you are in the wilderness and struggling to just survive day to day it is easy to get so caught up in the problems that you keep missing what He is trying to show you. The wilderness times are not just there to annoy you, they are also there to help you grow in your walk with Him. No matter where you are ask Him to show you what you need to learn or change in your life so you grow closer to Him and so you can be a light in this dark world so others will come to know Him. As it says in Jeremiah 33:3, “Call to Me, and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” It is so important to be sure that our thoughts and mindsets line up with God’s Word.
The only way to renew your mind is to spend time in His Word and listening to praise and worship music. If you have found you have become down and negative it is time to refresh your mind with who God is and if you walk with Him He will use whatever comes your way for good and He will help you grow closer to Him in the process. God loves you and His desire is to have a close relationship with you.
He is trying to teach each of us something every single day so we can grow into all He created us to be! It doesn’t matter how old or young, rich or poor, He still has a plan for your life. Don’t get to that point where you think you have “done and seen it all” That could be a bad place to be unless you are truly ready to move on to heaven. Why would you still be here if God didn’t have a plan? Ask Him what His dreams are for your life ~ you may be surprised at all He still has in mind. There are people who cross your path who need Him and you may be the only “Jesus” they will ever see, ask yourself how that’s working for them today. That is a sobering question for all of us because we are human and we all have “those days” but let’s all set our hearts and minds to pray and ask Him to give us direction and focus so we can become who He created us to be.
His best is yet to come, but only if you are walking close by His side.
Quote: “Adversity is always unexpected and unwelcome. It is an intruder and a thief, and yet in the hands of God, adversity becomes the means through which His supernatural power is demonstrated.” ~ Charles Stanley