I know that things seem to be changing rapidly all around us. Who hasn’t said, “Please, give me a moment of peace?” We all desire serenity. But, we live in a world often defined by confusion and disorder. Even in our inner world, we wrestle with past hurts, unhealthy habits, and destructive hang-ups, leaving us with troubled souls. However, we don’t need to remain where we often find ourselves. God calls us to a life with Him that gives us a way of entering into His peace. In Christ, we discover a life of peace, gratitude, freedom, and blessing that comes only through His divine intervention. It is impossible to go through this life without facing pain and hardship, but through faith in Christ, we find hope, healing, and serenity (see: John 16:33). One of the steps we can take to possess the Lord’s peace is to embrace godly transformation. This life-change is not self-willed but comes as we turn our lives over to Christ’s care and control.
When the Bible speaks of transformation, it does so meaning “change or renewal from a life that no longer conforms to the ways of the world to one that pleases God” (Rom 12:2). This change is accomplished by the renewing of our very minds. This metamorphosis is an inward spiritual transformation that is evidenced in outward actions reflecting Christ’s character, motives, and love (Col 1:10). Transformation involves those who were once far from God being brought into a right relationship with Him through Christ’s finished work on the cross (Eph 2:13).
Godly transformation is only possible in the life of a Christian. Further, it is only possible in a Christ-follower who recognizes that the source of such life-change is not themselves, but by the workings of the Holy Spirit when they surrender care and control of their lives to Him (Rom 8:9). Paul, writing of such an experience, declares:
“I have been crucified with Christ that is, in Him have shared His crucifixion; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body I live by faith by adhering to, relying on, and completely trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.”
Paul declares that the old self, who he was before coming to Christ, is dead. The new self, which he now is in the Lord, lives in Christ, or rather Christ lives in Him. Thus, the more of Christ’s truth a believer knows, believes, and by the power of the Holy Spirit walks in, the more like Christ they will be. It is the Spirit who, as we rely on Him, controls our lives, and cleanses us from any and everything contrary to God and His will. This is a daily walk and working. I have often said, “I am not what I ought to be, but I thank God I am not what I used to be. The Lord continues to work in and through me by the power of His Spirit.” This occurs as I yield to Christ’s control of my life.
Embracing godly transformation begins with the gospel message of Christ. Through this message, we learn:
“to put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness” (Eph 4:22-24).
Just before the apostle Peter’s death, he provided specific instructions on how to live out our transformed lives. He writes:
“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness…if you practice these qualities you will never fall. For in this way there will be richly provided for you an entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (see: 2 Peter 1:3-11).
Our history may reflect a lifetime of attempting transformation on our own. However, true transformation is a life-long journey, where we surrender control of our lives to the Spirit, growing from one form of godliness to a greater form of godliness.
It is an honor to be on journey with each of you. Let’s continue to walk in step with the Spirit. Let’s encourage one another to embrace godly transformation, which is not the work of human will, but by the power and leading of the Spirit in the life of one surrendered to Him with a willing heart. Let’s ask our Lord how we can spread His peace to our family, friends, and community. Soli Deo Gloria (Glory to God Alone).