"Do not conform any longer 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."
Have you ever seen the sticker NOTW? Those who believe in Christ know that this stands for. NOTW means "Not of this world." We clearly see that God is making a statement when Jesus spoke of this in John 17:17. He make it clear that we were no longer of this world. Peter tells us that we are a holy people and a holy nation, a people set apart for him.
Unbelievers and those who doubt God will surprise you. As an ambassador of Christ, have you ever had a non-believer point out some of your unchristian like behavior? The world is constantly looking at us to see if whether or not we are living like Christ. I am not talking about perfection, but God does tell us that they will know us by our fruit. We too are to know God's people by their fruit. Galatians 5:22 tells us "but the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control."
When we do not allow the power of God to transform our lives and submit to him daily, then transformation is not at work in our lives. God tells us that first we are redeemed, then justified. From justification, we then are sanctified. From sanctification, we are transformed, then we finally are glorified in Christ. Without being set apart for God, we will experience no transformation. We will continue to be in bondage to the world and their way of thinking rather than experiencing the freedom in Christ.
It is easy to spend our days trying to please others and gain their acceptance, but in the end what they think does not matter. Friendships and acquaintances may come and go in our life, but the one who will stick closer to us than a brother is Jesus. He will be there for us in every situation. He will encourage us when we are down and give us hope in the darkness. He is one that will transform us and renew our mind. He will give us truth and bring hope into a hopeless situation. He will show us what God's desire is. He will show us his good, pleasing and perfect will. We will be transformed from a caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly.
The starting point of transformation comes when we make a decision to become that living sacrifice and do not conform to the pattern of this world. As we begin to seek God and his perfect will, we will find it when we allow God to sanctify us. He will arise and begin to show his glory. He will then transform us into the same image from glory to glory. We will experience the presence of the Almighty God and see his power in our lives. Then those around us will say, God is with them and I want what they have.