Last week, I began to discuss with you the journey to transformation. I explained that this process is not easy. It is a painful process; one that will leave you feeling foolish, lost, a laughing stock of others, and living in a confusing dark space for a while, allowing yourself to be spit up on a new and unexpected shore. If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. As human beings, we seldom go for anything that will cause us any form of discomfort, let alone pain. We flee from pain. I have learned that we only learn the most valuable lessons in life when we go through pain. A mantra that I live by is this: run away from people who have no scars.
We then went through the sequence of commitment, many ending up giving up. We would rather have a quick fix and continue sweeping things under the carpet.
This week, I would like t share with you some nuggets on the most important place to start your transformation journey. That place is Spiritual growth. This is the single most important place to anchor any form of transformation. Deep, lasting spiritual change is a process. It rarely happens overnight. It involves training, testing and time. There are no shortcuts. However, to embark on this spiritual growth journey, you must be sure it is something you want to embark on. Why, you ask?
Spiritual change requires desire. A deep longing in your soul. You need to ask yourself: Do I really want to change, or am I content to remain as I am? How important is change to me? Am I sure I am willing to pay the price to make this change? Have I reached my proverbial “rock bottom”? What price am I willing to pay and how far am I willing to go?
Spiritual change flows out of an intimate relationship with Jesus. Like my nephew likes to say to me, life begins when you meet Jesus. Truly, this is when my life began. I had always wanted to please those I love, and I got grieved when I offended them and did not meet their expectations. However, when I met Jesus, I learned that the more I loved Him and got to know Him, the greater my inspiration to obey him and to make the choices that please him. The process of true change takes place as we are weaned from our love and worship of self, lust, greed, jealousy, pride and this world; and our hearts become wholly devoted to Christ.
Spiritual change requires discipline. I can remember as a college student sitting for hours on end in the library or my room going through volumes and volumes of legal manuals and case law to ensure that I grasped all the concepts as I prepared for my exams. I knew for a fact that I would not excel without the discipline of studying and putting my blinders on and focussing on what was important. I knew that I never would reach my goal — to be a qualified solicitor — without that rigorous discipline. The same applies to spiritual transformation. It requires time and dedication. My friends, nothing of value comes easy – most especially, not spiritual growth and maturity. We must be willing to pay the price.
Spiritual change is brought about by the Holy Spirit, as we exercise faith and obedience. So, you may be asking, which is it? Does God do the work, or do I? According to Scripture, the answer is “yes, you do the work and yes, God also does the work. We are co-labourers in this Kingdom. You do your part and God will do His part”. Many of us want God to do all the work. It’s no wonder you are where you are. True spiritual change is initiated and enabled by the indwelling Spirit of God; it is all of grace, which we receive as we persevere in humility and obedience by faith. That said, we must take time to study the Word and spend time with God seeking which way we should go. As much as the Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth, trust me, you must also do the work of feeding yourself with the right spiritual food. You spend 20 min with God, asking Him for bread and butter, over a period of 24 hours and wonder why your life is remaining the same. The bible tells us that where your treasure is, there your heart will also be. If all you desire is money (and don’t get me wrong, money is good), I assure you, any cheap gimmick to go make money will always grab your attention. My prayer for you is that may you never be so poor that all you have is money.
Spiritual change is possible and assured. It is not when will I get there but rather, how far can I go. It is a lifelong pursuit, oftentimes a painful process. I can assure you, though, that if you keep seeking diligently and with faith and confidence, one day the transformation will be complete. It is possible to enjoy the fullness of God in this land of the living. You can live the abundant life and find rest round about. However, for this to happen, you must put your best foot forward and yearn for spiritual change. This is the first and most important step in transformation.
This will be your anchor and your true north.
Join us again next week as we continue with this series on transformation.
Till next time, take care, be safe and God grant you grace that you may hear His voice