Romans 12 (New International Version)
1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual[a] act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Whenever I read these verses I am reminded of the Chris Christian Song, Living Sacrifice. The link will take you to a YouTube video of the lyrics and song. It a beautiful and inspiring message and dovetails with the message that Paul conveys to us in Romans 12.
It is not by accident either that Paul goes on to say in the verses that follow that we are not to think more highly of ourselves. Rather we are to be humble and submit ourselves to God's will for our life. Remember the context of this. Jesus, God's only begotten son, ruler of the entire universe modeled for us all the example of a humble servant.
If Jesus had exalted himself, he would not have been the model nor the acceptable sacrifice for our sins. But because he was obedient, even to death on a cross, the Father Himself exalted him. It was because of this selfless act of obedience to the death which opened the door for us to enter into fellowship with the living God!
And so it goes with us as well. If we are pompous, if we exalt our own attributes and standings; if we put ourselves before others, we cannot and should not expect the Lord's blessings in our lives. However, if we humble ourselves before the Lord and even before others, we will find ourselves in the midst of ministry! We will find that the Lord will use us, His Holy Spirit will guide us and open doors for us to witness to God's work in our lives. Isn't that what it's all about? Isn't ministry of the Word for the benefit of God's Church the active focus of our lives here on earth?
I find this truth in my own life. Take it or leave it. And that is this: I find the most satisfaction, the most profound feeling of fulfillment, in giving my life away. By sacrificing my time, energy, talents and gifts to....others. It is by this that I am made whole and complete. By being obedient to what God has called me to do. However, I also find that my own hubris constantly fighting with me and that I need to actively humble myself before the Lord in order to keep it under control.
What about you? Where do you find your greatest fulfillment in life?