February 8, 2022

What Are You Aiming For?


Do not conform any longer 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 12:2

When the apostle Paul was counseling the Romans on how to determine what thoughts and actions were in keeping with Jesus’ teachings, he wrote, “stop being conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds” (Romans 12:2). The fact is that we are constantly being transformed by something. Renewal is what ensures that the life of follower of Jesus, practically demonstrates a focus on Jesus, not other people, or “the world.” Paul’s instruction to stop conforming to the world is often interpreted as “don’t be like other people.”  But the real goal is aiming at being more and more like Jesus. The more you study the ways of Jesus, the more profound this instruction is.

My brother is a marksman who likes to target practice at a shooting range.  When honing his skills, he’s not watching the others at the range.  His gaze is absolutely fixed on the bullseye of the target he’s aiming for.  So, we don’t measure transformation against other humans, even admirable ones.

Thankfully, the Holy Spirit guides us in the renewal of our minds and the transformation of our actions that leads us to exhibit the qualities of Jesus: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). We grow in these attributes, not by copying or denouncing one another, but by inviting the Holy Spirit to transform us and immersing ourselves in scripture.

Holy Spirit, help us focus on Jesus, not others, and transform us so that His ways are our own!


Resource reading: Galatians 5:13-26