Changing the World
Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you. (Romans 12:2)
We can become so 'well-adjusted' to our everyday culture that we aren't really paying attention to things around us as God sees them. We actually miss 'everyday opportunities' because our gaze is too far off or our attention is distracted. All change within us begins on the inside, working its way out to the things we see and appreciate about each other. Have you ever been so engrossed in something happening 'around' you that you miss totally what is going on inside you? It is possible God has placed you right where you are today - though not totally mature or 'grown up' in him - to be used by him in the life of another.
How do we get to the place we 'readily recognize' what is going on around us, within us, and within others? I believe it comes when we 'tune in' to God just a bit closer. How do we 'tune in'? Some will tell us we need to spend hours and hours in prayer and fasting, while others will lean toward the idea of this many chapters read each day from the Word of God. I will tell you this - no amount of 'hours in prayer' or 'specific number of chapters' will actually matter all that much if our hearts are not behind the actions. I have read just to check it off the list, prayed to say that I did, and followed well-intended advice on 'how to grow', all the while missing one important aspect - God wants my heart, not just my deeds.
We all must spend time in the Word, but is one verse or one chapter the goal? The goal is whatever God uses to speak to your heart. It could be you are reading along in a Bible reading plan and find nothing really coming to life for you. Stop for a bit and just settle into one psalm or proverb, letting God direct your thoughts right there. Then pray on that verse - allowing God to show you what he wants you to see about your present actions, attitudes, or beliefs. God will use that one verse and that dedicated time more than he will the 'reading list' to change you (and in turn, change your world). Just sayin!