Bible Reading: Romans 8:28-39
Key Verse: Verse 29 - “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."
Key Words: to be conformed to the image of his Son
One of the great American myths is that we are a nation of rugged individualists. We like to think of ourselves as Abraham Lincoln’s, Patrick Henry’s, and other great American heroes who stand against social ills and sins. In truth, though, we are a nation of social cowards. Why, we spend more of our time on expending our energy and resources attempting to be accepted and liked by others. The average American is motivated by fear – fear of ridicule and rejection.
Since we fear this ridicule and rejection, we find ways to be accepted, conforming to the whims and wishes of others, afraid to stand for what we know to be truth and righteousness. The average person seeks to be liked by everyone, normally at the expense of their convictions and beliefs. For adolescents the urge to conform dictates most of their activity for a period of about ten years.
At a 4th of July celebration in New York City, a popular teen-aged choir was to sing The Battle Hymn of the Republic. One of the teens (a group leader) said, “I’m going to pretend to faint. Who’ll join me?” So in a live performance before thousands, he went down pretending to faint. By the time the song was over, more than two-thirds of the choir was “pretending” with him. This is conforming at its height. Kids fear being rejected and ridiculed so they conform: “I’ll wear what others wear, and listen to what others listen to, and use language that others use. I’ll conform, going against everything I’ve been taught and every value I believe in.”
One young teen-aged girl was asked why she was involved with pre-marital sex. Her response was, “Everyone else is; it’s what you do.”
Our children cope with their feelings of inadequacies by surrendering, fighting, being the class clown, denying reality, and conforming.
I close with the words of the Apostle Paul found in Romans 12:1, “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect will of God.”
What to do:
✞ Train your child to be conformed to the image of Christ.
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