Our lives are all filled with things that become second nature to us, engrained into the fabric of who we are. Whether we realize it or not, the habits and rituals in our lives can shape our very way of being and living. For many of us, picking up our phone to check a text, social media, or email will be one of the first things we do within five minutes of waking up. This, in itself, is a liturgy of sorts. A liturgy is an act meant to point us back to what we love and yearn for (which, for believers, should be Christ). Starting the day on our phone isn’t inherently wrong, but what if we were to start each morning instead with scripture and prayer? Why not further make time for and cultivate a relationship with the one who gave his very life so that we could be in his presence?

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind…
— Romans 12:2

Through this renewal, we can place communing and abiding with our heavenly Father as the focal point and richest part of our day, while also “being equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:17) that’s ahead of us. But how does this change our day to day lives? What does this mean on a practical level? It means that, when we interact with our family, friends, and strangers, we can love them with the love of Christ because the habits of our lives lean us towards kindness and graciousness. When our spouses upset us, we can forgive the way Christ forgives. When a friend says a hurtful word, we can overlook the offense (Proverbs 19:11). And when someone cuts us off in traffic, we can remember that they’re made in the image of God, just like you and I are. (This one can be pretty tough to remember.) All of this is holy living because we are running the race that Christ has set before us with vigor, passion, and, most of all, joy. Though this won’t be perfect, we do it because we are called to a sacrificial and holy lifestyle (1 Peter 1:16).

The even more miraculous part of it all is that the Holy Spirit is constantly acting in our lives, empowering us towards Christ-like living (John 14:16). What a gift it is to have a God that abounds in grace and mercy for his beloved children, with whom he is well pleased. Let us never forget or forsake the provision that God has given through his word, prayer, community, and the local body of believers in our Church.