Best-selling Christian author Donald Miller said that for the longest time in his life he believed this lie that “life is something that happens to you, not something you can steer and alter.” “It’s a crazy lie to believe,” he admits, “but one that is so pervasive.”
Often when I look at my life, complete with my habits, attitudes, perceptions, and routines I start believing the lie too. Maybe you’re the same way. Like me, maybe you’re set in your ways, always tripping over the same obstacles. No matter how hard you try, you’re always the same. Life just keeps on coming, and it’s never any different.
The truth of the matter is, that is not the way we were made. “Every healthy thing God created changes,” writes Miller. “God designed the world so that it is in constant motion, never sitting still, always dying and being reborn. Everything is changing, all the time.”
Just think about it for a minute… day and night the world is always in motion, always changing. Winter to spring to summer to fall, a constant cycle of dying and being reborn. The flowers and trees bloom and then they die off only to be reborn again. It’s the circle of life.
Then why is it that we convince ourselves we can’t be changed or transformed? Why is it that we convince ourselves we can’t get out of the same old ruts?
In Romans 12, Paul makes it clear transformation is possible. “Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform 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.” (Romans 12:1-2)
Transformation starts with offering ourselves to God by letting go, surrendering, committing totally.
Transformation continues through the renewing of the mind.
Spend some time leading up to Sunday considering what it might mean to be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
Spend some time reviewing the prompts/questions from the back of the bulletin this past week:
T-think about what spoke to you?
R-reflect and write down one sentence: what keeps you from total commitment?
U-understand your view of God and how that may impact your ability to entrust your life to Him. Do you understand God to be kind or demanding?
S-strategy is a choice. Start with small steps. God gets you and understands you. Intellectually we know what we need to do but we just cannot seem to do it. Pray the prayer: ‘O, God, help me develop a strategy that I can truly use!’ Ask Jesus for help.
T-take action by writing Romans 12:1-2 on a 3x5 card or on a blank page of your bible. Look at it daily.
M-motivation is key to sustained changes in our life. Pray for a rooted sense of who God is as a partner for true change.
E-encourage someone by sharing one thing you discovered God did especially for you in the past few weeks with a friend. Ask your friend what God has done for them.