There’s a traditional Bible song that has lyrics that go like this: O be careful little eyes what you see, O be careful little eyes what you see, for the Father up above is looking down in love, O be careful little eyes what you see. There is much truth in it because it does not say our Father up above is looking down to find fault with us, but it does say our Father up above is looking down in love. This is something I have experienced on a number of occasions when God has lovingly redirected my eyes, my ears and tongue away from the fleeting pleasures and temptations of this world. I feel His delight when I obey! On those occasions when I did not obey, it seemed as if the Holy Spirit had gone quiet coupled with this nagging feeling that I am missing out on His best plans for me.
We all have the same propensity to disobey God, and the equal opportunity to humbly obtain His grace and mercy to overcome sin in our lives. Yet our motivation for obeying and overcoming sin must not just be an outward show to demonstrate our religious piety. Think of a chameleon which keeps changing its colour to match its environment. The changing of colour is superficial representing no true, permanent change of mind or nature. What God desires to lovingly reward as “holy and pleasing” (Romans 12:1) goes much deeper. Paul was speaking to the Romans of an inside-out form of transformation.
The Greek word for “transformed” (“metamorphoo”) is where the English word “metamorphosis” comes from. A caterpillar goes through authentic changes that enables it to emerge and fly as a new creature—a butterfly! We do not want to settle on outward religious piety but rather be a people of transformation. This being the year of transformation in Lighthouse, we must ask ourselves; are we just going through the motions, or are we being transformed through the work of the Holy Spirit?
The following are two keys that can help ensure we be transformed as opposed to being conformed to the patterns of this world:
1. Feed your mind with truth about God’s will – to live the present.
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
The Bible provides powerful truths where His will is powerfully stated. This is what we must feed upon – to choose joy, prayer, and a thankful heart especially during times of trials and temptations. These are what have kept me going through the spiritual valleys in my own walk with the Lord. I count my blessings. I sing out, “Bless the Lord, O my soul, O my soul, worship His Holy Name!”
It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable. (1 Thessalonians 4:3-4).
When we choose to renew our minds with these verses, there will be a “holy restraint,” a heightened sense of conscience, and self-control based on what God considers holy and honorable.
2. Focus on what is eternally important to God – to prepare for the next.
But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. (Matthew 6:20).
When we focus on what is eternally important to God, we store up treasures not on earth but in heaven by feeding the poor, taking care of orphans and widows, taking care of the marginalised, the sick and the hungry – including the foreigners in our land. We can represent Jesus wholeheartedly, without fearing the sting of death or a loss of reputation. This results in our thoughts and beliefs no longer being conformed to the incentives of this temporal world. This allows for victories in our ongoing battle with the world, the flesh and devil. God can trust you with spiritual authority and influence to bring about transformation in the world around you.
In recent months the church has begun outreaches to the local community. This act of kindness not only brings about transformation into communities but also into the lives of those who have received and those who have given. It is a win-win situation for all!
Ask yourself today, “Am I living in a way that’s going to make a lasting impact for the Kingdom of God, and to lift high the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ?”
Monday: Jeremiah 31:3
The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.
Tuesday: Hebrews 4:16
Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Wednesday: Romans 12:1
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.
Thursday: 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.
Friday: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
Saturday: 1 Thessalonians 4:3-4
It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; that each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable.
Sunday: Proverbs 19:17
Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.
All scriptures are quoted from the New International Version
By Bro David Jeremiah Mok