Living sacrifices

September 24th, 2008

I have been reading and reflecting on Romans chapter 12 verses 1 and 2 the last few days. I have done this many times over the years as this passage was one of my first memory verses in the discipleship program I did.

For those not familiar with this passage it says…

“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” (NIV).

At the heart of this passage is offering our lives to God for His service in response to His mercy towards us. When I came to Christ back in 1989 this was the last thing on my mind. Yes I was a Christian, but I still wanted to live life on my terms and do what I wanted to do.

Over the years though, my mind has slowly (very slowly at times!) been renewed as verse two talks about. This has happened as I have prayed, read the Bible and allowed the Holy Spirit to move in my life. Now living my life for God just seems to be the natural option for me. It just makes sense and to be honest I couldn’t imagine not living this way.

Just as a matter of interest. The above text was taken from the New International Version of the Bible. The text below is from The Message version. I like the simple way it explains it…

“So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you”.