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Joyful Learning

Today's Devotional

Be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Romans 12:2

In the city of Mysore, India, there’s a school made of two refurbished train cars connected end-to-end. Local educators teamed up with the South Western Railway Company to buy and remodel the discarded coaches. The units were essentially large metal boxes, unusable until workers installed stairways, fans, lights, and desks. Workers also painted the walls and added colorful murals inside and out. Now, sixty students attend classes there because of the amazing transformation that took place.

Something even more amazing takes place when we follow the apostle Paul’s command to “be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). As we allow the Holy Spirit to uncouple us from the world and its ways, our thoughts and attitudes begin to change. We become more loving, more hopeful, and filled with inner peace (8:6).

Something else happens too. Although this transformation process is ongoing, and often has more stops and starts than a train ride, the process helps us understand what God wants for our lives. It takes us to a place where we “will learn to know God’s will” (12:2 nlt). Learning His will may or may not involve specifics, but it always involves aligning ourselves with His character and His work in the world.

Nali Kali, the name of the transformed school in India, means “joyful learning” in English. How’s God’s transforming power leading you to the joyful learning of His will?

Which areas of your thought life are most in need of God’s transforming power? How willing are you to act when you clearly understand His will for your life?

Dear God, I invite You to transform me by renewing my mind today. Thank You for all that’s possible when I surrender to You.


In the Old Testament, propitiatory sacrifices were offered to atone for sin. “The Lord will accept [the animal’s] death in your place to purify you, making you right with him” (Leviticus 1:4 nlt; see 7:7). Dedicatory sacrifices (see Leviticus 2–3), on the other hand, were offered voluntarily “as an expression of thanksgiving” to God (7:12 nlt). In response to Jesus’ atoning sacrifice on the cross that gives us new life (Romans 3:25; 6:4–10), Paul exhorts us to offer ourselves as a dedicatory thanksgiving offering to God. We’re not all called to die for Jesus but to die to sin and to self (6:2–11; 8:12–13). Instead, Paul calls us to live for Him in His perfect will (12:2), in humility (v. 3), and in unity (vv. 4–8). “[Christ] died for everyone so that those who receive his new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them” (2 Corinthians 5:15 nlt).

By |2021-09-29T09:06:05-04:00September 29th, 2021|
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