Romans 12:2: “Do not be conformed to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Too many people, walking across the chasm into new life in Christ, miss the path just a little. Not understanding that this is a relationship where we walk daily with Jesus, they try to change their lives by their own efforts. They conform, no longer to the world, but to the higher standards of the church. The problem is that this is still conformity, which is NOT what we are called to. We are called to surrender to Christ, to let Him take control and change us from the inside out. It is conformity itself which must be put to death, in favor of transformation of the inner person, and this is achieved only by surrender to Christ.
Colossians 3:2: “Set your minds on things above, not on things that are on earth.”
II Corinthians 5:17 is a favorite verse for many people: “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold the new is come.” That sounds so good. “The old has passed away, the new is come.” Doesn’t that mean my old habits are gone? My old ways of thinking? My old sin patterns? Unfortunately, no. I have heard that 80% of all we do, we do by habit. And if it takes 21 days to develop a new habit, then another 90 to solidify it…well, you get the picture. I don’t know about anyone else, but I came to Christ with more than one bad habit! Changing into a person fit for heaven has been, for me, a fifty-year process. And I’m not done yet. I must daily “set (my) mind on things above.” Otherwise, I slide right back to where I need not be.
Christ-centeredness is a lot of work. Jesus died on the cross to give us new life. We must daily take up our cross if we are to live that new life in holiness and truth.
God bless you!