By: Carole L. Haines
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. 3 For through the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think more highly of himself than he ought to think; but to think so as to have sound judgment, as God has allotted to each a measure of faith. (Romans 12:1-4)
My husband and I are in a wonderful Small Group through the Book of Romans right now. Paul is very candid about his continual struggle with the sin nature, even after his salvation, in Chapter 7.
21 I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 22 For I joyfully agree with the law of God in the inner person, 23 but I see a different law in the parts of my body waging war against the law of my mind, and making me a prisoner of the law of sin, the law which is in my body’s parts.
In our discussion of this principle put forth by the Apostle Paul, I commented that I am so glad God has allowed this struggle to be part of the Bible. I am so glad that God has let us see the shortcomings of many people in the Bible, Old and New Testament. I am glad because I struggle so much in this transformation process. Transformation is not for sissies. It is hard work. It is a yielding of ourselves to God, in our bodies, our souls, our thoughts, our words, our intentions, motives, etc. But when we look at the Scripture in Romans 12, given above, we can see the outcome is wonderful.
2 “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
God’s will is good and acceptable and perfect. He wants to conform us to the image of His Son, Jesus Christ (Romans 8:29). Who wouldn’t want to be like Jesus? I sure do! The word, acceptable, euarestos in the original Greek, means well-pleasing. Transformation is a good and well-pleasing work, but we must yield to it. I have had to write two letters of apology this week due to something I let slip out of my mouth. It is hard, but when the Holy Spirit taps you on the shoulder and says, “You need to make this right!” you need to yield. But it gives such peace, no matter what the other person’s response is. They may forgive, they may not. But each of us in only responsible for our own actions, not those of others.
Dear Believer, don’t fake any of it, yield to the hard work of transformation. It truly does yield the peaceful fruit of righteousness. Sometimes the closer we get to Jesus, the more we see is wrong in us. God only reveals these things so He can set us free from them; as we yield to His good, pleasing and perfect will.
Truly, transformation is not for sissies, but it is for each of us, and it is O so good to yield to that which is “good, well-pleasing, and perfect.”
Have a blessed day in the Lord.