July 30 I Tuesday
“Do not offer any part of yourself to sin as an instrument of wickedness, but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to Him as an instrument of righteousness.” —Romans 6:13
The word “instruments” Paul uses in the above verse is not only interesting but entirely appropriate when we consider that skill is not found in the instrument itself but in the hands of the user. A violin will simply gather dust unless someone plays it and a scalpel will not save a life unless it is in the hands of a skilled surgeon. An instrument will only find its value in the capability of its user.
Paul tells us to offer our bodies as instruments of righteousness: “Therefore, 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...” (Romans 12:1). This involves a deliberate and wilful offering of ourselves to God in light of having been brought from death to life because that is our standing. Whatever parts of us lead us to sin, we offer those to God in order that they may become instruments of righteousness and not instruments of sin.
Just as there are many different instruments in an orchestra that contribute to a beautiful symphony, as Christians, we are the different instruments that contribute to the body of Christ. A person who picks up a violin for the first time is not expected to play a masterpiece. It takes a process of learning, coaching and practice, which will often include failure. In the same way, as we offer those parts of our bodies that lead us to sin, it takes a process in which we are weaned away from attitudes and habits contrary to the will of God. We will, of course, falter and fail, but failure serves as a stepping stone to achievement when we adhere to the single-minded goal of becoming in Christ an instrument of righteousness.
In the Christian life, skill does not lie with us but with Christ Himself. We have different personalities, gifts, strengths and weaknesses, but we come together in the body of Christ, not to try the best that we can, but to offer ourselves as instruments of righteousness for His agenda and purpose for our life. What that requires on our part is a disciplined, day-to-day attitude that is fresh in every situation. At every fork in the road, may we look to God and say, “Lord, I give myself to You,” where our willingness and dependence upon Christ will then become instruments for Him to use in His hands. Jesus is not only the power within us to do what we never dreamed possible, but from start to finish, He is our conductor.
Prayer: Lord God, thank You for being my conductor. There are no better hands I could be in than Yours, and I pray You make me an instrument of righteousness for Your work in this world.