Don't Stop Now

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God, this is your spiritual act of worship.  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 12:1-2 (NIV 1984)

February 9 – Don’t Stop Now

Begin your time with God in prayer.

Praise God for who He is.  Confess any sin so that nothing blocks your fellowship with Him.  Ask God to use the Spirit and the Word to transform your life.

Let God’s Word penetrate your head and your heart.

Read Romans 12:1-2 out loud.  It’s our verse of the year and we want to learn it. 

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."  Hebrews 12:1-2

The last 40 days have been the beginning of what we hope is a life of transformation for you.  As you proceed on God’s path, keep your eyes fixed on Jesus.  When we take our eyes off Him, we can be so easily distracted by the things and people of this world.  To continue to grow, we must regularly evaluate our lives and identify the things that hinder our relationship with God and our involvement in His work.  We will need to literally “throw off” the sin that continually entangles us and takes us out of God’s race.  There will always be the temptation to stop coming to worship, to slack in our serving in ministry or giving to God’s work.  Those are warning signs that our hearts need some spiritual attention.  Keep your walk with God fresh every day by renewing your mind with His Word, connecting with His body and being involved in the work of God both through serving and giving.

Apply God’s Word to your life.

What might hinder you from continuing on this path of spiritual transformation?  Do you have the courage to “throw off those hindrances?  If so, when?  Who will hold you accountable?

What sin or temptation tends to entangle you and take you out of the race?  Will you decide that this is the day to rid yourself of it once and for all, or get the help you need to deal with it?  If so, when will you do it?  What will you do?  Who can help you and hold you accountable?

What specific plans will you make to spend time with Jesus every day so that your eyes can be fixed on Him?  Who will hold you accountable?

Father, I praise You for what You have done in my life during the past 40 days.  I don’t want it to stop.  I confess that in the past I’ve made changes and then slipped right back.  I want to do it differently this time.  Guide me to people and classes I need to continue to grow and fulfill my part in the body of Christ at Sunrise.  Convict me with Your Spirit and Your Word whenever I begin to stray.  I want to finish my race with You.  Amen.

Related verses to meditate on:

"So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.  The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit."  Galatians 5:16-25


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