FROM THE DIRECTOR’S DESK - Romans 12:1 says, “...present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service”. What is a “living sacrifice”? This is not a common phrase in the 21st century Western society. It is however what is asked of us as Christ followers. To be a sacrifice means that we deny the desires of the sinful nature and surrender to God’s will. This is no easy task. It radically goes against our culture of self-promotion and individualism. It means laying down our own dreams, ambitions, gifts, and fears, and letting God know, “I am your servant. Do whatever you want with my life.”
Verse 2 gives us direction as to how we can become the living sacrifices that God desires. “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” First, we are told that a living sacrifice is not conformed to this world and its values. We must reject anything in our culture or society that does not line up with the Word of God. Christ followers must have the courage to reject practices and ideas that are not right in the eyes of God.
Second, a living sacrifice is transformed inwardly by the renewing of the mind. We do this primarily by the power of God’s Word. We must read, study, memorize and meditate on Scripture. It is the only power that can transform our hearts from worldliness to true spirituality. Finally, a living sacrifice learns be able to discern the will of God. The thought is that as the Holy Spirit works in us, we will grow in our understanding of who God is. By gaining this understanding, we will develop the ability to determine what God’s will is for our lives. A living sacrifice is one of total and complete surrender. Surrender is being conformed to His likeness, transformed by His Word, and yielding to who He is and His direction. May this be a focused obsession for us all. ~ God’s blessings, protection, and favor to all.