Romans 12: 2
"And do not be conformed to this world [any longer with its superficial values and customs], but be transformed and progressively changed [as you mature spiritually] by the renewing of your mind [focusing on godly values and ethical attitudes], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His plan and purpose for you]."
In today’s scripture of focus there are five key areas of revelation embedded in them and we shall be looking at them right away.
First is the instruction to avoid conformity with world. The word ‘conform’ means to act in accordance or harmony or to be or act in accord with a set of standards, expectations, or specifications. Thus to conform to this world implies to act in accordance to the standards, expectations or specifications of this world. As children of the Father, we belong to another Kingdom and have our own set of rules and standards by which we live, as against the standards and set of rules held by the world.
For example, in the Kingdom of God, being sick, confused, hopeless or complaining is seen as an anomaly, where as the world calls it being real or human. The Kingdom advocates a 'brighter-and-brighter' lifestyle, the world denies the existence of such and declares life is full of ups and downs.
Please note that conformity deals with action and not nature or source. Thus like a lion that has lost a sense of what it is by reason of growing up in the midst of sheep, many children of the Kingdom, though gods, act like humans and, as such, are subject to the experiences of humans.
Oftentimes when conformity to the world is spoken of, we imagine sin or the worst of traits and behaviours, without realising that subconsciously we hold on to some of the values of this world; a chief manifestation of this is what we call our culture. It is so easy to hear a child of the Kingdom talk about certain practices or mindset with boldness and joy, even when such culture (way of life and pattern of reasoning/thought) are not in tandem with the Word; “In my place, this is how we do it”, they gladly quip, as though they have never heard that they are citizens of a heavenly kingdom and are not of this earth. I am also referring to cultures such as African time (tardiness), lackadaisical approach to work, honouring people based on age or affluence, etc.
Another culture of this world we must be wary of is their method of communication. They speak what they see with their (physical) eyes, but we speak what we see with our (spiritual, which is our main) eyes. Even if we are in the exact same physical conditions as they are, we cannot and should not speak in the same way and terms as they would. To them, speaking negativity and weakness is keeping it real; to us, speaking negatively and weakness is creating negativity and weakness; keeping it real is speaking in consonance with the Word.
When Paul wrote this, he was clearly trying to pass a clear message that as children of the Kingdom, we have our own culture and unless we discover and uphold this culture, we stand a chance of adopting the culture of the people around us to our own detriment; and that is where renewal of the mind comes into play.
I am from above and not of this world. I acknowledge my citizenship of the Kingdom of God. I choose to live in accordance to the culture of the Kingdom of God and not the culture of this world. I refuse to be conformed to this world! Glory!!
Philippians 3: 20 "For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ"
James 4: 4 "Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."