I urge you, brothers and sisters, in
view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living
sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true
and proper worship. — Romans 12:1
Statistics show that in North America church attendance
is shrinking, especially among young people. It’s hard
to know what to make of this trend, but some churches
have tried to respond by adding a “cool” factor to their
worship—cool music, cool pastor, cool worship space,
cool coffee bar.
Further studies have shown, though, that “cool” is not
what young people are actually looking for in a church.
Instead, they are seeking authenticity in their leaders
and a cause worth staking their lives on.
Paul proclaims that there is something worth sacrificing
everything for: it’s called God’s mercy. And yet God’s
mercy cannot be bought through any sacrifice we make.
It’s God’s gift to us, offered freely in Christ. And
Paul explains that when we look and see God’s mercy in
our lives, our response will be gratitude.
Living gratefully isn’t your work alone. Christ is at
work in you, opening your eyes to God’s mercy and
prompting you to stake your life on a cause with eternal
benefits. How will you be a living sacrifice today?