Do not conform 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.
Sweetened iced tea is a staple beverage here in the South. Even though I've lived in Georgia most of my life, however, I've never developed a taste for it. When I tell friends I don't drink sweet tea, they look at me as if I've grown a third eye. Until, that is, I explain that any tea, unless it's herbal, doesn't agree with my stomach. Which, truth be told, keeps me from drinking any teas, herbal or otherwise. Just not one of my favorite things to imbibe.
Another savory taste in the South is honey. Yes, I've tried it. Ugh! Too icky sweet for my palate! I'll pass, thank you very much. Honey resides in the category of "Evil Foods I'll Never Eat," where it enjoys the company of beets and radishes.
But, this past February when my husband, Danny, and I both fall prey to a vicious bug, all of that changes. We need to keep hydrated, but it's too cold to just drink water. Danny drags himself to the store to buy some Sleepytime Peach Tea so we can have something warm and soothing to sip on. Though, even now, it takes some convincing before I acquiesce.
"Here," Danny says, handing me a steaming mug. "Just try it. I guarantee you'll feel better for drinking it."
I'm too miserable to argue. I take a sip. Then, two. Then, three.
"This is delicious!" I declare. "What did you put in here besides the tea itself?"
"Lemon and honey."
What??? I'm drinking tea sweetened with honey? And, liking it? Must be the illness messing with my taste buds.
But, I can't deny that this is one delectable drink. So, I continue to consume it in great quantities. Does it make me feel better? In the sense of comfort and warmth and taste, yes.
The most amazing transformation, however, happens when my sickness abates and I begin to feel human again. I still crave the tea! So much so that I now drink two cups a day, late morning and mid-afternoon, instead of that third cup of coffee I used to relish. In fact, as I write this post, I'm sipping on a delightful cup of the Sleepytime adorned with lemon and honey. Heavenly!
And, it is in this simple change of heart and palate, I am reminded of how God transforms us into His children when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. We may be, as I was so many years ago, caught up by and conforming to the patterns of this world, but God wants to change all that. He wants us to follow His will, and when we do, He will help us to discern what His good, pleasing and perfect will is for our lives.
What could be more comforting, warming and tasty than that?
Are you allowing God to transform your life?
Prayer: Father, may our prayer ever be that Your will, not ours, be done. Let us be transformed by Your incomparable love and grace, and renewed each day by Your Holy Spirit. In the precious name of Christ Jesus, we pray. Amen.