Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Words of Encouragement

How many of us have workout equipment in our basements or homes that are just sitting there? We want our bodies changed but we simply keep walking past the equipment as if the change will be made without any effort. We have to take the first step and get on and after the proper discipline, we will begin to see the change. It is the same with our relationship with God. We cannot expect him to change our way of thinking if we do not talk to him or read his word that will help us take the first step.

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. For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you. - Romans 12:1-3

Take My Life. Take My Mind...Transform it. I no longer want to think the same. That is what comes to my mind when I read this scripture as well as what crosses my mind as one that loves the Lord. I no longer want to think the same because I acknowledge within myself that my thoughts are sometimes selfish and self-serving.

I want to have my way all the time and I do not want to sacrifice anything. As a child of God, however, the Spirit of God cautions me when my thoughts are conformed or like this world I live in. He will remind me that in order for my life to be directed by God, I have to also allow him to transform or change what I think and how I think it.

The old Jewel when you hurt me would have moved away from you and never have anymore contact with you. Why? I felt in my way of thinking that if you hurt me I could not trust you and it was easiest for me to cut you out of my life for good. However, God continues to change that thought process in my mind. Instead, what he does is make me go back to those places and those people that have hurt me and continue to love them.

Why does he do that, we wonder? He does it so that he can perfect us and to create in us the ability to understand what his will is. He calls us to be living sacrifices and we are not able to do that unless our minds are changed. He does it so that we will not puff ourselves up and think more about us than we should. That means we allow God's Spirit to change the selfish tendency in us to be more focused on the will and desire of God.

This can only happen with the daily transformation that must take place. These transformations are causes by the situations, circumstances and trials that we face. They gives us the opportunity to live out the will of God as he reveals it to our minds (through his word and by his Spirit).

Today, Lord thank you for transforming our minds by renewing them with the things that are pleasing to you. Thank you for helping us to no longer conform to the things of this world and the things desired by our selfish flesh. Thank you for perfecting us. Thank you for taking our will and transforming us. Thank you for transforming us into righteousness.