2.Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
4 Just as each of us has one body with many members and these members do not all have the same function
5 so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others
Man.... I just.. phew... I dont know what it is about Romans that sometimes you just let free in it and feel like your floatin around a big refreshing pool.
Those are challenges for me. To a lot of people they are fluffy little verses that are pulled out when people are being tempted, or are being selfish. To me ... they are HUGE challenges.
1. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world.
That is hard enough. this world is full of things I enjoy. Movies, music, indulgences, and most of all a comfy individualism that I sometimes thoroughly enjoy having ingrained in me. Not only does it say try not to fall into the worlds habits but moreso DO NOT CONFORM ANY LONGER. thats like now. Like stop... no seriously... stop. And as difficult as that is I not only understand but long to not feel like I am conformed to the pattern of the world. How are we as Christians, as lights, salt, etc going to stick out and show people we have something different, something Magnificent if we conform and blend in so well with the rest of culture. How then can we impact the nations? How can we show other countries that being a Christian doesnt mean being American, and being American doesn't mean being a Christian. Sadly those things tend to blend a little in the international and even domestic attitudes.
2. But be transformed
Ok.. stop conforming.... now be transformed. Well yes but how... How do we allow ourselves to be transformed from the ways of the world in practical, obvious but not "showy" or "look at me .. I love Jesus" sing songy ways. I don't want to be a WWJD wearin, devo devouring, tract toting psycho with a lot of words but no personal emotional spiritual transformation. It seems like people assume when the previously stated changes become noticeable one is a "good cool christian". Ok.. along with every other person in the culture who has their "style" but no passion for His children. I want my transformation to be apparent in how I react to situations, how I encompass Christ's passion for life, death and most importantly His resurrection of people. I see life come out of death all the time. Why cant our transformations include being dirty and smiling about it. What a challenge to become transformed in a way inspires transforming others.
3. Renewing of your mind
Now this is even more interesting. I forget this part a lot. I stop doing this a lot. And then I go through times where I am doing things like this. Where a verse begins to become clear, practical and impacting. What all constitutes renewing. I don't think having a daily devo, and going to church every sunday is what he's talking about here. In my eyes it is things like going to places you haven't been, spending time with different people, spending time with children and older adults, learning new skills, getting involved in ministries, services, and non profits. Renewing of your mind seems more like getting yourself out of the groove youve made from pacing in the world. Right now I feel like Im in that process. Renewing myself through new experiences, challenges, and opportunities to praise Him.
God is so good. Today was a rough day but I feel like I have met some challenges emotionally that I have been ignoring for awhile. Thank you for renewing my mind and strength continually God. Its good to know I am not alone in this foreign country. Im glad you are experiencing life with me.