"Therefore, I urge you to offer your bodies as living sacrifices," is referring to living our lives as instruments of praise in the sense of letting go of our selves to glorify God. Letting go or not being in control of your life, referring to our bodies, is one of the key and most essential parts of being a Christian or better yet a follower of Jesus. God needs to have complete control in our lives to carry out His will through us, to reach the nations, to reach our friends, and to reach those who He loves. Because our nature is not pure we need God, we need God to run our lives because He will bring us success and will perform amazing miracles through us. We are not able to do this on our own because naturally we tend to drive ourselves into the ground; we naturally tend to bring harm and destruction upon ourselves.
"Holy and pleasing to God, this is your spiritual act of worship." We do this as an act of worship to God. Worship is giving praise, giving honor, love, respect, and blessing to God. We are to do this because we love God. We do this not just because this is what Christianity has called us to do. We choose to do it, out of love and respect, this is what "holy and pleasing to God," means. "Do not conform any longer to the patterns of this world." Not conforming to the patterns of this world is referring to not going along with what the world makes as ok, examples being homosexuality or abortion, both are things that are trying to made as O.K. to do, but they completely go against the bible, God's word. They are both things of this world or ways of this world and we are called only to be in the world, not of the world. "Be transformed by the renewing of your mind," simply put, have your daily devotions. Read into God's word daily. Renew your mind and the only way or the only one that can renew it is God. So, pursue Him in prayer, worship, and reading His word continually and regularly. "Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is." Then you will know what His plan is. Then you will know what God is speaking to you about. God is always talking to us, but we are not always listening, so we need to be renewing our minds daily and listening to what His will is, what his plan of action is.
I always try to make this a part of my daily lifestyle, always diving into his word and I'm always trying to be intent to what he is speaking to me about, but I'm not perfect and this isn't how my life is always lived. I don't know sometimes what God is trying to say. I don't know sometimes what Gods plans are or where he wants to lead me so I can follow. But, even though I mess up and stumble, it's my responsibility to get back up and began to pursue Him again; no matter how many times this happens. I wills always love God, and He will always love me. When I fall short of Him, I ask for forgiveness and he forgives me and then stutter is then a thing of the past and I'm start anew with God.
One of the most prominent parts of my life that I see Romans 12.2, renewing my mind specially, being useful or one of the places where this takes a major role in my life would be worship. I have never straight up lead a worship service or time before, but I do play guitar for worship services and harp and bowl services which is an out right Holy Spirit lead worship service. There is no play list, no practicing of songs before hand, it is completely Holy Spirit driven and very prophetic. These services, Harp and Bowl, rely completely on being into to what God is speaking and praying and what He is telling us to pray. These services constantly go for at least three hours, or that is what we limit them to, and its amazing how I have never notice that I have been playing guitar or worshiping for three hours straight. His Holy Spirit comes I become so captivated that I'm in my own time capsule and have almost no clue what is going on around me sometimes. The same goes for any regular worship service. God needs to have complete control and can not be limited by ourselves. We need to also be in tune with God and ready to follow his leading. This is also how life should be lived, a life of worship to God, which is what I try to strive for constantly.