If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? Some set a goal of losing weight or gaining muscle tone. Others wish to be more organized or less stressed. Would you want to be more outgoing and brave, a better student, a more diligent employee? People try to reinvent themselves by changing outward appearances and behaviors.
But there is a much greater and more important change which St. Paul urges. He writes: “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Rom. 12:2). This isn’t just a cosmetic change on the outside. This is a dramatic transformation on the inside worked by the “renewing of your mind.” Paul is referring to the change worked by faith in Jesus. It’s a drastic shift in one’s attitude toward God. Instead of seeing God as an adversary, by faith we love Him as the One who sent His only begotten Son to suffer the condemnation of sin in our behalf. A person cannot hear and believe that gospel good news without it having a profound effect on their thinking. Instead of living for self, the believer’s mind is set on pleasing the Lord in every way.
That mind-renewal within is going to be seen in all kinds of outward ways. How can we be bitter and angry when we know that the crushing weight of our sin was lifted off us, put on Jesus, and buried with Him in the grave? How can we go along with the sinful trends of the world when we’ve been rescued from that way of life and the condemnation it brings? How can we put our own wants and desires first when we owe our eternal salvation to the Lord? Instead of being “conformed,” let’s be “transformed” by the power of the Word working in our minds and hearts. And let it show for all to see!
In tomorrow’s sermon text (Is. 35:3-7), the Lord urges us to look beyond our weaknesses and trials and find strength for each day in Him.
Yours in Christ,
Our fall schedule begins tomorrow:
Services: 8:00 and 10:45 a.m. (Sunday school teachers will be installed in first service. Lord’s Supper will be celebrated in both services.)
Choir: 9:10 a.m.
Sunday School: 9:30 a.m.
Adult Bible class: 9:45 a.m.
Public school confirmation class: 12:15 p.m.