Some years ago the Cabarrus Baptist Association had a partnership with the Muskingum Valley Association in Cambridge, Ohio. The two associations decided to assist individual churches of their associations in whatever needs they may have had at the time including church growth (evangelism), construction, teaching, etc. Therefore, the first step was to schedule revival services for each association and have the visiting pastors from the opposite association lead the service. The Cabarrus Baptist started the exchange and took a team of pastors to Ohio.
I was assigned to Clarington Baptist Church in the town of Clarington, Ohio, located in the eastern part of the state near the Ohio River. The church did not have a pastor at the time but had two young deacons who with God’s help were doing a great job with the administration and made sure there was always someone to fill the pulpit on Sunday.
The first message I preached was on full commitment to Christ from Romans 12:1-2. After completing my sermon one of the church leaders said, “Would you believe that the last two pastors who filled the pulpit preached from the very same passage?” My response was that it was no surprise to me. The message is clear. God is calling this congregation to recommit their lives to God and let His will be done in leading this church forward in being an effective outreach for the Lord Jesus Christ.
Christians continue to ask the question, “How can I know God's Will for my life?” It seems as though some people want to know the answer without exerting any effort. They prefer it be delivered on a bright shining platter. Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way. God does not withhold His will but wants us to diligently seek Him as defined in Romans 12:1-2. Paul makes a strong appeal to the Christians in Rome to present their bodies to God as living sacrifices.
The sacrifice should be like giving our tithes and offering to the church. The bodies are not to be killed but to live for Christ. Our Lord Jesus Christ is the perfect illustration of a "living sacrifice," because Jesus actually died as a sacrifice, in obedience to His Father's Will. Today, He is in heaven as a "living sacrifice" bearing in His body the wounds of Calvary.
Paul indicates that our bodies should be holy (set apart) and acceptable to God. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 says our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit. Righteous living is needed. Whatever we do in the body should be well pleasing to God. "Therefore we make it our aim, whether present or absent, to be well pleasing to Him." (2 Corinthians 5:9, NKJV).
The total commitment to Christ is our reasonable service or spiritual worship. Paul is asking a lot, but God paid a tremendous price when He let His Son die for you and me. Thus, we need to examine our lives and see if they are pure and honest. God does not want a portion of our life--He wants it ALL.
Finally, we are to prove that “Good, Acceptable, and Perfect Will of God. Our commitment to Jesus should be as described by A. C. Palmer in his hymn, “Ready to go, Ready to stay, Ready my place to fill; Ready for service, lowly or great, Ready to do His will.” God has a job for you to do. Are you committed and ready?