The aim if this devotional study is to reflect on the need for a renewing of our thoughts and habits as part of God’s healing in our lives.
Romans 12:1-2 (ESV)
1 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.
2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Context: In Romans 1-11 Paul beautifully articulates the Gospel to the Roman churches which he has not yet visited. Then in chapter 12 he begins with “…therefore, by the mercies of God” and for the next 4 chapters he explains the consequence of the Gospel – how it affects the personal, family, public and church life of the believer.
- How does verse 1 and 2 fit together?
- Rephrase this verse in your own words.
- Paul gives three keys to knowing God’s will
- What are the three keys he gives?
- What is meant by “the will of God” here?
- The Phillips translation of verse 2a reads “Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its own mold.”
- What is meant with “the world” in this context?
- How can “the world” squeeze you into “its own mold”? What is “its own mold”?
- What is wrong with being “conformed to this world”? Why does Paul say one should change your worldview/ outlook on life?
- What is Paul’s advice to “not conform”?
- How does one “transform” yourself by “renewing your mind”?
Personal reflection and application
- Prayerfully reflect on your own life and thought patterns regarding the following areas and identify what thought patterns should be renewed/ adapted to reflect and fulfill God’s will. Try to be specific.
- Your view of God
- Your view of yourself
- Your view of money, possessions and/or time
- Your relationships with believers
- Your relationships with unbelievers
- Share this list with a mature Christian friend.
- Choose the one most pressing area noted above that needs transformation.
- Find a Scripture that reflects the change required, and write it on a card today.
- Commit to reading and reflecting on that truth every hour today for 2-3 minutes. (as you prayerfully continue in this discipline for some time, there will be a change in your thinking)
- Ask the Lord for grace to transform your thoughts.