What are the things, memories, observations, dreams, or experiences that fill you with amazement, awe, reverence?
- Seeing the birth of my children.
- Watching someone transform spiritually.
- The changes in my wife during pregnancy.
- The fact that people sometimes follow me as a leader.
- The four seasons.
- Love–particularly agape.
- Watching/experiencing true teamwork where my unique significance makes a difference.
- Contemplating the incarnation.
- Studying the hand of a baby or young child.
- The rhema/pneuma of God’s Spirit in my life.
What would you add?
25 years ago today we tied the knot. Thank You God for Jennifer!
Jennifer and 2 of her favorite things: camera and flowers
Romans 12:1-2 helps us with this too.
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform 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.
1. View the mercies of God. If we lack passion or interest in being holy, it comes from a failure to contemplate God’s mercies toward us!
2. Remind ourselves that the only rational response to Christ giving us all of Himself is to give all of ourselves to Him.
God’s commandments, and our obedience, rest on that loving relationship; they do not form the relationship. We obey because we are loved; we are not loved because we obey. The love of our Father precedes and stimulates the obedience of His children. We are to forgive and live and love as dearly loved children, imitating the One who already is our Father, not performing to bribe God to become our Father.
Paul gives us a springboard for the Christian life in the simple phrase: “Therefore…in view of God’s mercy.” And then he urges us to do two things which are central to following Jesus.
#1) (vs. 1) In view of God’s mercy…offer your bodies as a living sacrifice. This is temple terminology. The confusion is that there were several different kinds of offerings.
- Sin offering: But Jesus is our sin offering.
- whole burnt offering: It had to be without defect (holy and without blemish). Why? Such an animal was expensive. It showed that all you had was at God’s disposal, not leftovers. To be a “living sacrifice” is to be fully at God’s disposal.
In mentioning our physical bodies Paul is saying that God does not want a purely inward and abstract worship, but a practical and total one. He wants us to give him everything we do.
#2) (vs. 2) In view of God’s mercy…Renew your mind. That’s how the Christian life occurs. It is the way we are to be transformed into Christ-likeness. He doesn’t define this but probably means more than just thinking true thoughts, but that the governing influence of our mind is reoriented. We could say that our imagination is captured by Christ. Who he is and what he did fires the imagination and controls our minds.
Skip to 11:00 to get to the iconic and might I say “prophetic” part of this speech.