This weekend I will be leading a workshop at the RENOV8 CONFERENCE on the “TRUE ESSENCE OF FAMILY”. We will be looking at Matthew 12:30 which states, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.”
It’s easy to read those words but it can be so difficult for us to actually live them out in our lives. There is a good chance that many of us have been guilty of simply giving Jesus a place in our lives – and not all of us. When we get to that point of full surrender that’s where life truly becomes different!
Recently I have been studying the lives of teenagers from the Bible…trying to figure out who they were, what they faced and how they overcame insurmountable odds. What did they come to understand that so many of our youth today do not?
These young teens within scripture decided to be different. Instead of conforming to the world around them, instead of repeating the sinful patterns present in their families, instead of going along with the crowd that defied God—they stood up and declared, “I will be different.” Romans 12:2 is blatantly clear when it says that we all have a choice. You can be “conformed” to this world or you can be “transformed” by God into something individual, unique, and wonderful.
The more time I spend with “Christians” the more it appears that we have bought into the lie that the Bible offers us a cookie cutter faith. That every believer has to look the same, act the same, and do the same work. I personally believe that nothing could be further from the truth.
If you read the rest of Romans 12, you’ll discover that God has given each and every one of His children a unique package of spiritual gifts. These are abilities supernaturally empowered by the Holy Spirit that allow you to serve others in the church and to help build Gods kingdom.
Psalm 139:14 says that each person was “fearfully and wonderfully” made. We are unique. We are all special. We are all important to God! He has given you a specific package of gifts and talents that make you one of a kind. Now the challenge is for us to open that package and tap into those gifts and talents so that we can be transformed into the person that God created us to be.
Whether you are a grandparent, parent or child, the world wants you to pursue conformity—the boring old sameness. Our culture demand s that we all squeeze ourselves into the mould which it has created. When we do this—we deny God the opportunity to shape our lives in a unique and powerful way.
As we head into this conference weekend at CSC – may I encourage you seize the opportunities to be empowered by those individuals who God has put in your path but more importantly to be empowered by God himself! Be blessed!
Here are some questions to consider individually and as a family.
1. Am I trying to be myself or am I trying to be like someone else?
2. How many masks am I wearing? (Take the time to name them…and then surrender them to God)
3. Why do others pressure me to be like them?
4. What does this pressure make me do?