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.
If we believe this verse to be true, how do we do it? What patterns are followed by this world? How should we, as Christians, be following Christ in these areas? Well, I don’t have it all figured out, but I have discovered a few areas where the patterns of the world don’t make sense. I believe I have found ways to remedy this, and live more productively for the Kingdom. I will be touching on the areas of personal image, social classes, dating, and music.
Are we living like we are the image of Christ, created in His likeness? Do we live as if we are children of God? Sometimes we forget the whole foundation of our identity. We let things slide, usually our state of mind. Maybe, we even wish things were the way they were for us before we knew Christ, “easier” maybe. They say ignorance is bliss, or is ignorance a narcotic of sorts for our mind so we don’t feel the hell we have put ourselves in? We do this to ourselves. It’s a total identity crisis. We know who we are, but we don’t want to believe it. In a sense, we want to shove Christ’s blood back in His face and spit in his face like the Roman soldiers did. Is this who we want to be?
We are so comfortable with sin that we begin to sit with sinners while they sin. We say,”I disapprove of what they are doing, so I’m not going to do it”, but we still sit and watch sin happen so our minds begin to sin in our minds. The longer this goes on the more that thought of sin manifests into physical sin, and we can’t avoid this. If we think about doing something long enough, we will. It’s a fact; our mind controls everything we do, does it not? So let’s stop trying to control our body and start controlling our mind by changing the way we thing not just the way we do something. If this pattern of our mind, running wild and not grabbing the reins, continues we allow death to spread like a disease. The way we live is what people notice first before even a word is spoken, so think about who you represent and how well you are doing.
Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
Have you ever noticed the world operates on a different rule in this area? In the world, you have to be prideful and knock others off the ladder to get anywhere. Survival of the fittest really crumbles before the Lord.
For those who exalt themselves, will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.
This rule, from the mouth of Jesus himself, is not how the world operates. In school those without Christ were either a popular hypocrite that took every opportunity to knock someone down, or were an outcast with a heart for vengeance. To survive in today’s public school system you have to fight to stay on top or keep fighting to not drop further on the social ladder. This is not God’s plan for us; we are to love others as ourselves, and in an age of vanity we know how much we need to love others. We have no excuse; we have the manual for our entire life in arms reach.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of this devotional series!