Do not conform 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. -Romans 12:2

How many of you know this verse? How many of you have even taught from this verse or used this verse to encourage the kids in your church to follow after Christ?  Great!

I was thinking about this verse in Romans and I was really stuck on the words, do not conform.  I know we typically use it to teach kids not to follow after the things that are important to the world.  But sometimes I wonder if we take them from one life of conformity and instead of letting them be transformed, we just ask them to conform to a different set of rules.  We teach, whether by what we say or what we do, that Christians can only look, act, and be a certain way.

Please don’t take me the wrong way. I think that there are definitely traits by which Christians can be identified, but I also believe that just following the new set of rules isn’t being transformed.  I believe that transformation is something much more personal.  I think it means God takes the things inside of us that are unique and He uses them in ways only he can see.

As my child grows, I am already seeing some very unique personality traits.  I hope so badly that I never suppress what God has put in him, but that I encourage him to allow God to transform him and use those traits for God’s glory.

I certainly haven’t figured out what all this means for my life, my son’s life, or for the kids at church, but I am definitely asking the tough question when prepping my lessons.  Does this encourage the kids to conform to a set of standards that I feel are important, or does it encourage them to be transformed beyond standards?

If you have thoughts, please share in the comments section because I think this is just the start of the conversation.