Memory Verse Challenge (Week 5) – Obedience to Christ (Romans 12:1)
by Brian Walters, Director of Discipleship @MBCLouduon
Romans 12:1 (ESV) – “I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” Romans 12:1
So what does it mean to obedient to Christ? As I dwelled on this question the thought crossed my mind that I fall short of being obedient to God far too often. Also, when I fail to be obedient it often leads me to believe that I am not a very good Christian. Thoughts of shame, being fake, or a ‘poser’ come to mind. Do you ever feel this way?
Perhaps the more appropriate question is, “What is the deepest desire of your heart?” As a Christ follower we often think we are fake, unworthy or we may even doubt our salvation when we sin, but the reality is we are in a constant battle with our sinful nature (Gal. 5:17). We are going to fall short, but Lord willing the reason we get so disappointed with ourselves is because we want to give all that we are to Christ, because we love Him and want Him to be glorified. So our deepest desire should be to serve Christ because of our love for him. If this is your deepest desire you need not question the authenticity of your faith because this is exactly what God wants from us: to love him with all our heart, soul, body and mind (Matt. 22:37).
The type of spiritual worship God requires of us is heartfelt, sincere, and loving. It is not looking to what we can get from God because He has already given us everything we need in Christ (Eph. 1:3). It’s about giving ourselves completely and whole heartedly to him without expecting anything in return. John McArthur says, “The key to spiritual victory and true happiness is not in trying to get all we can from God but giving all that we are and have to Him.” Are you giving God your whole heart?
Prayer: Dear heavenly Father, as the Psalmist says, “Search our hearts and see if there is any grievous way within me and lead me in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24).” Lord, let our lives be a pleasing, acceptable and holy sacrifice to you, who loved us first and gave yourself up for us because of your bountiful mercy. Lord, please break our hearts for what breaks yours. In Jesus’ name, Amen.