Flak Vest Devotion #16 — It’s Not All Black and White

I beseech you therefore, bethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:1-2 (KJV)

At the Marine Corps Pickle Meadow mountain warfare training center in the Sierra Nevada mountains, hot water used to be a rare commodity. For two hours in the evening, Marines would flood into the shower facility for a hot shower. Long showers were not an option if each person could expect to have their coveted hot shower. However, during the precious 120 minutes of hot water if a person in the next room were to flush the toilet it would take away the cold water turning an enjoyable shower into a scalding experience.

Like clockwork at the end of the designated two hour period, the precious commodity of heated water would vanish until the next evening. Anyone caught in the shower at that precise moment went from hot to icy cold in a matter of the blink of an eye. The Marines at the training site knew the exact time the hot water would cease. It was in black and white in the site’s standard operating procedures.

The Word of God has some black and white standards yet so much of our lives seem to be in the gray area. Certainly, we know from the Ten Commandments that we are not to steal, murder of have sexual relations with our neighbor’s spouse. But, there are times when God’s Word is not so clear about the issues of our lives.

That’s why a relationship with Jesus Christ is so very crucial for our lives. Christianity isn’t about memorizing a book of rules and regulations. It is about a God that loved us so much that he provided a way to an intimate relationship with Him through His word to us and through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ coming to this earth in the form of a human to die for our sins. We are to be led by the spirit of God. We are to listen to his voice of guidance in our hearts.

Paul addresses this concept in Romans 12:1-2. While salvation is certainly the starting point of our spiritual life as a Christian, to experience the full joy of being in God’s will we have to have our minds renewed. As we begin to practice the concept of renewing our mind, we will begin to think the thoughts of God. You can’t help but know what a person thinks that you spend a lot of time with. As Christ is dwelling within us, we will begin to live our lives moving closer and closer to the will of God in our lives.

Lord God, please help me draw closer to you today and choose to allow you to renew my mind. I want to be in your will in every area of my life. Please help me to continue towards that goal. Without your help I will surely fail.