Therefore I urge you, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

Romans 12:1-2

This essential service, presenting our bodies to God as a living sacrifice to God, is an amazing sort of interaction. It is not a transaction; we are not giving something to God that he doesn’t already have. Nor is it really depriving us of anything; living for God doesn’t remove the enjoyment of living that life.

In fact, Paul says that becoming a living sacrifice involves becoming transformed by the renewing of our minds, not languishing in mediocrity, following the will of God to a better state of being, indeed doing what is perfect, that is to say, the complete or mature will of God.

Worth noting that the “be transformed” in our passage here is in the present tense, an urging for the moment that it is read; this is not a wish for a future in which we may be transformed but a command to seek that transformation. Let’s be living sacrifices, not so that we can die but so that we can live more fully!

Thus the Christian is a poetic contradiction; a sacrifice that lives and yet not only lives but continues to grow!

Ethan Kirl

Originally Published October 11, 2021