I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. 3 For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. 4 For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: 5 So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. — Romans 12:1-5
God's kindness to us is demonstrated by the fact that He doesn't leave us in the condition we were in before coming to faith. How tragic it would be if we still thought, felt, and acted the same way we did before receiving Christ as our Savior. Throughout our lives, the Lord uses His choice tools to shape us into the image of His Son.
Prayer. By talking to the Lord in open dialogue, we develop a relationship with Him. He becomes not just our Savior, but our friend, and as the intimacy grows, so will our passion to be with Him. Setting aside time for prayer each day will become a delight, not a duty.
God's Word. You can't grow in your Christian life if you keep the Bible closed all week long. No one lives on one meal a week, yet many Christians try to get by with just a Sunday dinner of the Word served up by their pastor. How can we expect God's truth to do its transforming work if we never let it into our minds and hearts?
The Church. Christ uses His body of believers as a place for transformation. That's where we rub against each other and have the rough edges of our character smoothed. It is a place of instruction, accountability, and encouragement.
Are you letting the Lord use His character-shaping tools in your life? Our culture has no shortage of worldly voices and pressures that fill minds and influence behavior. Only when we intentionally schedule time for God, His Word, and His people can Christ do His transforming work in our lives.
For more biblical teaching and resources from Dr. Charles Stanley, please visit www.intouch.org.