“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.” Romans 12:1-2
What is God’s will for my life? You have heard that asked before, and most likely you have asked that question as well. We all wonder, from time to time, if we are fulfilling the purpose for which God created us. Is there a purpose? Does God have a plan for each of us? Let me explain what I believe is God’s plan for His prized creation, especially those of us who are called by His name.
In Romans 12, the apostle Paul tells us what God’s desire is for us in how we should live our lives. Here is a simple glance at what Paul teaches us as Christ’s followers:
We are to:
- Live our lives holy and pleasing to God (v. 1)
- Pursue a transformed life through a renewed mind (v. 2)
- Possess a proper self-image, in accordance to our faith (v. 3)
- Use the gifts that God has given to us (vv. 4-8)
- Love others, serve God, give freely, be hospitable, live in harmony with one another, resist being proud, be a peacemaker, and leave vengeance to God. (vv. 9-19)
- Overcome evil with good (v. 21)
From this chapter in Romans, can we discern what God has planned for us? I think it is rather simple to do so. If I were to use familiar, YMCA language, I’d say Scripture is teaching us that God’s plan for you, and me, is to love Him with all of our spirit, mind, and body. Then, closely behind that is to love others. That’s what Romans 12 is all about. And it’s blueprint of God’s purpose for His creation. In a way, it sounds like the apostle Paul was retelling what Jesus taught in Matthew 22, when He said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself.”
God does have a great purpose for your life. Not only is it a specific purpose and calling, but a purpose of complete devotion to Him that manifests itself in love, service, sacrifice, and faith.
That’s God’s plan for you. And that’s His plan for me. And when we are living those traits in our everyday lives, we can be assured we are smack dab in the middle of His will.
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