I do not like to separate a message from its concrete business. I am deliberately highlighting Roman 12:2 without the context of human bodies – balancing our godward and community obligations – because the connection lends itself to the very thing we need to do but largely ignore. 12:2 may begin like the notable Sinai covenant with its Do not conform, but it rattles a cage we need to protest.
Do not conform to the fashion of this world; but be transformed by the complete change that has come over your minds, so that you may discern what God’s will is–all that is good, acceptable, and perfect.Romans 12:2
Stop conforming! Cooperating with the transforming work of the Holy Spirit. The world wants us to adopt its wisdom, fashion, and goals, but we are on a different trek. Keep decreasing the readiness to shape our lives by what the world dictates. Knowing that friendship with the world demonstrates the absence of divine Father-love we mount a strong and sustained protest. Knowing that for the rest of our lives there is transformation and renewal we contend vigorously for growth in Christ. Knowing that the world will eventually turn on us we refuse to be turned on by its pretty pictures of shallow success.