Grace Debrief 9/24/17
Today was the final message in our series on the letter of Paul to the church in Rome. We covered four chapters in about forty minutes!
There's some beautiful music in those chapters! (12-15). Please take a few minutes and read them. Then you'll understand what I'm about to write.
Yep. It was the topic of discussion at church. An earworm is a sticky song that you can't get out of your head. Like "Let It Go" from Disney's "Frozen." Or "Who Let The Dogs Out?" Or the theme from Gilligan's Island. (You're running through one of these right now, aren't you?)
Not all earworms are bad. I love it when one of Grace Band's worship songs gets implanted in my heart and just keeps popping up all week. And sometimes, often, in fact, I wake up with a song playing in my head. I treat those "earworms" as gifts from God, and I look for reasons why he put that particular song on my heart.
We've talked about how the Gospel of Jesus Christ is a song - the music of grace. That gospel melody is God's perfect, wonderful earworm, playing itself out in our hearts and through our lives. That's what Paul is getting at in the last chapters of Romans - this Good News stuff needs to find practical expression in the way we live our lives.
That's why Paul writes . . .
"I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect." Romans 12:1-2
The Gospel is designed to transform. Instead of conforming to "this world" stuff, Paul's appeal is for us to allow the Good News to revolutionize our daily lives.
So, in these four chapters, Paul outlines several ways this transformation might show up. This is not an exhaustive list. But it gives us a lot to consider, and a lot to surrender so that the transforming can happen in our own lives. You'll want to read these chapters and make your own list.
In the end, the question is this: How is the Gospel working itself out in practical, evidential ways in your life? How are you continually DIFFERENT (transforming) because of the Good News? How is that beautiful music - the music of grace - being heard by the people around you?