Anti-Conformity: Romans 12:2

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I have spent all week thinking about this verse! It started when I was in the car with my parents and out of nowhere, my Dad says “Do not be like the world. What’s that verse in Romans about not conforming?” And then I quoted it. “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but instead be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what is God’s will.” And than he started to talk about that verse but the meaning didn’t sink in till Wednesday.

I was at the hair salon-of all places!- and the young woman who was doing my hair asked how old I was. This is a pretty common question for me cause everyone always assumes that I’m in my early 20s. So I quickly answered: “Sixteen.” Her reply took me by surprise. “Oh, okay yeah that makes sense. Right when I saw you, I knew you were real young.” Like I said, I’m used to people thinking I’m a lot older than only 16! “Oh, wow!” I had said, “Normally people think I’m a lot older. I’ve never had anyone think that I’m really young. I guess it’s my height that makes people think I’m older than 16.” She looked me in the eyes and said “Well, it’s your eyes, they’re innocent.” To which I brilliantly responded with “Oh.” Was it a compliment? I guess it was now that I think about it. But at first, it was the last piece to the puzzle my mind had been arranging the past few days.

The click was so loud, I’m surprised no one else heard it. If it hasn’t clicked yet for you, let me attempt a little mind mapping. This is what I thought: Wow I’ve made it this far and I still have innocent eyes which means that all I’ve been through hasn’t changed the fact that my soul isn’t damaged by the pain this life has caused me. Is it possible to make it my entire life with innocent eyes? Are they innocent because I am naive? Or are they innocent because I have accepted that there’s bad in the world, but have been able to see through it and embrace the light? What if that’s what the verse means? That even though we can not separate ourselves from calamity because we are in this world, we can choose to not to accept the world’s ways as our own. And if we turn to God instead of the world-including friend’s and family- we can be transformed. And God won’t take away our pain, but renew our minds and show us and make us pure again. He can show us a better way to live. That was the last puzzle piece!

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