The difference between involved & committed
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Involved or Committed



The turn to a new year evokes reviews and assessments of the past year and often resolutions for the impending year.  There is certainly nothing wrong with annual evaluation, but a year can be a big chunk of time to handle.  The Bible encourages us to take each day on its own--let go of yesterday, not worry about tomorrow, but commit today to Him.

There is an old joke about a typical bacon and egg breakfast that states “the chicken was involved, but the pig was committed.”  It isn’t too difficult to be involved:  input your part and move on, never allowing our faith to be a real inconvenience.  But being committed demands moving out of comfort zones, rearranging schedules, activities and even relationships and jumping in with both feet.  Romans 12:1 says “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.”  A living sacrifice is a commitment of our bodies, our flesh.

A lot of us make New Year resolutions about our bodies; the #1 resolution is to lose weight, #5 is to get fit, #7 is to quit smoking.  Christians often tweak this to involve their spiritual walk—pray more, read the Bible, give more etc.   Our spiritual walk is often tied to physical bodies, (flesh), like getting less sleep to pray and read the Bible. Less than half of these resolutions survive past six months.  But people who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don't explicitly make resolutions.1   In the next verse of Romans 12, Paul tells us God’s way to master our flesh:  “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.”  The battle field for overcoming our flesh and the natural world is in our minds!  We can not only transform our fleshly habits by renewing our mind, but we can know God’s perfect will! 

Renewing of the mind happens only when we ingest God’s Words-- about us, who we are, what we have through Jesus’ blood covenant—and reject what the world says.  When God’s promises trump ‘the pattern of this world’ in our minds, we see God’s perfect will manifest.  Reciting a Bible verses is not the same as knowing or believing a truth so strongly that it alters our life. It is only the truth we know that sets us free.  Our lives are transformed when we know without a doubt that God’s Word is reliable and true--all His good promises, all His covenant blessings—are for us today; that God orders our steps2, has good plans for us3, gives us good gifts4, gives believers the Holy Spirit5 and answers prayer6.  Things happen, lives change, miracles manifest, prayers are answered when we allow the renewal of  our minds.

The Word of God isn’t to be ingested a la carte, it’s the all-encompassing full meal deal.  We can’t take only the ‘comfortable’ parts that fit our traditions or theology.  It is all there for our benefit and edification.  The Body needs everything that Jesus purchased at the cross.  The Holy Spirit confirms this Word in our spirits, reveals the truth and gives us discernment.   Time ingesting the Word and praying in the Spirit bring the Word to life, and cements Truth in our hearts and minds.  There is no shortcut.

My prayer for 2017 is that we, the church, resolve to be transformed by the daily renewing our minds, actively making God’s Word first in our lives, truly becoming living sacrifices who are thoroughly and fully committed. 
2.  Psalm 37:23
3.  Jeremiah 29:11
4.  Matthew 7:11, Luke 11:13, James 1:17
5.  Luke 11:13, Acts 2:38, Acts 15:8, 1 Corinthians 2:12, 2Corinthians 5:5, Galatians 3:5, Ephesians 1:13, 1 Thessalonians 4:8
6.  Matthew 18:19, Matthew 21:22, Mark 11:24, John 14:13, John 15:7, John 16:23, 1 John 3:22, 1 John 5:15.

Christians were the most persecuted group last year with 1 Christian killed for their faith every 6 minutes in 2016full story

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