1 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.
Romans 12:1 (New International Version, ©2011)
Before I became a true Christian, meaning before I understood and accepted what I now believe about Jesus Christ, I used to think that the whole Christian thing was a bunch of "do's and don'ts". I also thought God was the "big guy upstairs" that would bash me with a hammer if I ever got out of line. I would venture to say that for most that outside the faith, that is exactly how they think. It wasn't until I really understood God's gift of sacrifice to me that I found reason to give back in gratitude to Him.
Paul, the writer of Romans, begins this chapter exhorting us to living the right way for God. We do this through understanding that how we live, now that we are followers and examples of Christ to others, really is an example of our praise and worship to God for what He has done for us. We are asked to be a "living sacrifice", a personal demonstration of our faith and obedience to God, by the manner in which we serve Him.
He then will go on to describe the practical tips for being "living sacrifices" before God and those around us. Over the next few days we will take a look at how we can daily live out our faith and study the instruction he lays out to accomplish this.
Photo "Passionate Prayer" by Kobos, 6-7-2006, from stock.xchng