Conform vs. Renew

27 Sep 2018, 00:00 // George Bryans

I hope you’re all doing well. Recently I have been thinking about Romans 12:2 and what effect it has on my life and how I interact with my friends.

I play football for a club on Saturdays, and as much as I love it, it is also a challenging environment to be in. The culture both on the pitch and off the pitch is a very different culture to one that I find at church and amongst my Christian friends.

I often feel tested to change whom I am in order to fit in. For example, if I am being the linesman and there is a tight offside call, I am pressured by my team to give it in favour of my team, rather than to maintain my integrity and give my honest opinion. Or possibly it is after the match in the bar and the chat isn’t the most wholesome, there is a pressure to chip in with the chat to be a part of the ‘banter’.

The world is constantly trying to push us into its moulds and patterns; the pressure to conform is an ever-present pressure in our lives. But we are called to live a different and a God-centred life. I think that in order for us to live like this, our minds need to be constantly renewed, just a Paul writes in Romans 12:2

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.’

“What does it look like to have your mind ‘renewed’?” I hear you ask. Our mind becomes full of what we fill it with, and whilst that may seem obvious, so many of us wonder why we have all of these strange thoughts or dreams, and that’s the answer, if we sit in front of Netflix all day or watch horror movies that’s what we are filling our mind with.

So to renew our mind we need to go back to God’s word, the Bible, and remind ourselves of the truth, we need to meditate and pray through what it says and how it applies to our lives. This will allow our mindset, beliefs, values, behaviours and plans to be directed by the Truth, rather than the lies that the world tells us.

Prayer: Lord, I pray that You will come and transform and change me so that I will be renewed in my mind and in the way I think and believe. Help me to not to conform, but that may I be renewed in my thinking so that I can see things from Your perspective. Amen.