Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer 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. Rom 12:1-2
We've seen that serving is our response to God's mercy.
Serving begins with getting my heart right before God. It begins with
1. getting my body ready ("offer your bodies as living sacrifices")
2. getting my mind ready ("be transformed by the renewing of your mind.")
Let's start with 1.
"offer your bodies as living sacrifices"
"Living sacrifice". We've heard the words so often we don't even hear them. We water down "sacrifice" until it means missing a favourite TV show to go to a Bible study. But sacrifice is about a bloody, dead lamb on an altar. We are the "living slaughtered", our lives used up for the pleasure of God.
The problem with a living sacrifice is that it keeps crawling off the altar.
We say to God, "Yes, Lord, take me, take all of me.........but not......... ______________."
What do you finish the sentence with? What's your disclaimer, your caveat? That's what's stopping you from serving God with all your heart.
We all signed up for this. Have we forgotten?
I went home and finished the sentence. It was ridiculously easy to come up with 5 things that keep me from serving God whole-heartedly, and I'm sure there's more:
2. good standing with non-Christians
3. my children's happiness
4. the good opinion of Christians
5. the right to complain (!).
What's holding you back from being a living sacrifice?
This is a summary of part of a talk given by Steve Chong at MTS Challenge Victoria.
images is from stock.xchng