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Sponges

Briefing: Do you worship on duty? Does your department have a policy that addresses a time to worship?

Dispatch (Assignment): Read Romans 12:1-2.

On the Street: How would you define worship? Is it possible to worship while on duty? Paul says, “Offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God; this is your spiritual act of worship.” This is not only possible to do while on duty, it looks a lot like how peace officers are supposed to act anyway. Previous devotions have discussed the importance of living a life of righteousness. This living righteous and worship can be lived out simply by obeying the commands of God.

This obedience is how we show God we love Him. In John 14:15 Jesus said, “If you love me, you will obey what I command.” Growing up, I remember times when I did things my parents wanted me to, not because I wanted to or because I was afraid of them, but because I did not want to disappoint them. I loved my mom and dad and tried to follow the rules (obedience). I am blessed to have children who do the same for me. As a father, their obedience makes me so proud of who they are as people.

“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.” Obedience to the teachings of Jesus will transform us to the kind of person He has called us to be.

Successful transformation will also require the transforming of our minds. This includes what comes in as well as what goes out. We have to decide to filter what we see and hear. This means the shows we watch, the music we listen to and the conversations we participate in. 2 Corinthians 10:5 says, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

This takes mental discipline. There may be some long time habits in your life that are hard to break. The mental aspect of what we do is crucial to this spiritual worship. Think about the language you use, the people you associate with and the type of media you allow into your head. I memorized a verse that helped me through the hard temptations. 1 Corinthians 10:13 says, “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful, He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” Reassuring words from your Father who is watching over you and protecting you.

Investigational Resources: Ephesians 4:1 and 1 Peter 2:11.

Officer Safety Principle: Start paying attention to the things you watch and listen to. Our minds are like sponges. The things we soak up are the things that come out of us. If you soak up filth, this is what will pour out of your life. Concentrate on soaking up good things.

from The Book of Romans Through the Eyes of a Cop
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
Click here to check out the entire Through the Eyes of a Cop series!

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