We are getting closer to the end of the alphabet as we continue focusing on words that can encourage us and draw us closer to God. This week’s letter is the letter “T”, and the word I want to talk about is the word “transform”. In order for us to grow closer to God we must transform our minds. Read the words of Romans 12:2: “do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

This is a very challenging verse for us in light of the society we live in today. When I was growing up, I remember my mother buying dress patterns at the store. She would pick out a pattern based on what she wanted the dress to look like. She would then lay out the pattern and follow the instructions. The pattern was very clear and she followed it.

There are many “patterns” that are being laid out for people to live by today. It doesn’t take long to hear someone’s opinion as how we should live, both inside the church walls and outside in the community. We hear folks say we should accept this group, or exclude this group. We should support this group or oppose that group. It seems we are told each and every day as to how we are live. That’s fine to listen to, but as Christians, we must make sure we follow the pattern of Christ.

Jesus warns us about conforming to the patterns of the world. Conform is a word which means to behave in a way that is accepted by others standards. Mainly, the world’s standards. Instead, Jesus says to transform our minds. We are to transform our minds, or be transformed by renewing our minds. But what is Paul talking about when he says we are to “transform” and renew our minds? Basically, Paul is saying in order to follow Christ and live closer to Him we must change from living for ourselves and turn to living for Christ. This involves how we think, how we act and how we talk to/with those around us.

So, what is the pattern we are to follow that would cause us to transform our minds? The example and perfect pattern is Christ himself. A verse that tells us exactly what the pattern should be is found in Matthew 25:40. Jesus is teaching a parable about thinking of others when he says, “whatsoever you do for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you do for me.” Simply it is called seeing others through the eyes of Christ. Seeing people who need to be accepted and appreciated for who they are, not by the world’s standards, but God’s standards. God’s pattern. When we focus on others as God’s creations it helps us transform our minds off of us and onto God. This is not easy to do, but it is something we must do if we are going to draw closer to God. Until next week…

Peace and Blessings…