There are certain things in the order of creation which the Creator never intended to stay the way they are. Take a caterpillar, for example. A caterpillar was never meant to stay a caterpillar. Through a process called metamorphosis (Greek meta (change) + morphe (shape)), the caterpillar is intended to change into something much greater. What many people don’t know, however, is that our Creator intends a similar process of metamorphosis to occur in human beings. Not a change of external shape so much as inward ‘shape’ – a change of will and desires as we prepare for eternity. That’s why the bible urges in Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed [lit. metamorphe] by the renewing of your mind”. Your Creator’s desire for you, therefore, is to be someone other than the person you are today.
We need to get this. Because it’s in complete opposition to the message we’re used to hearing: that you’re okay the way you are and feel free to stay that way. Of course, that’s the path of least resistance. It’s not easy to change. We like things the way they are. Therefore there’s all the more need for us to take this truth on board: your Creator intends to change you into something much greater than you are today.
That’s why he sent Jesus to earth. One of the simplest ways of understanding the gospel message is this: Jesus came so that you can change. He came to remove the one thing preventing you from being the person God intends for you to be – the penalty and power of sin over you – SO THAT you can change. Many Christians forget this last part. They happily accept Jesus’ death on their behalf, but then give no thought to the inward changes God wishes for them. One constant of the genuine Christians experience, however, is change.
So how does this change take place? Religious activities? Singing? Meditation? Good deeds? No, God’s intended way to change you is through “the renewing of your mind” – that is, changing the way you think about things. The way you view your world and circumstances. After all, your mind is what determines your wants, and your wants determine your actions. Therefore to change you properly, it must all start with your mind. The problem is that our minds are constantly barraged by ‘patterns of the world’. Every movie, every advert you wait 5 seconds to skip on Youtube, every music video you watch are all intended to slowly, imperceptibly, morph your thinking about things to conform to the pattern of the world. These, however, will not lead you to become what God intends of you, but merely a clone of a broken world.
To break out of these patterns of thinking, a “renewed mind” is necessary. This comes through exposure to God’s word, the bible. The bible is more than a book. It is a catalyst for mind transformation. Millions of Christians can testify how a daily bible reading habit has, over the years, transformed them in ways they never expected. That is how God wants to change you too. That’s why we make a central point of bible teaching at our church meetings – because that’s how God’s going to change us. Church – Christians gathering together around God’s word – is really the ‘cocoon’ in which you are meant to go through a process of metamorphosis. So, really, all that’s left is to ask, are you willing to go through that process? Are you willing to make a habit of daily bible reading, and are you willing to put aside whatever other activities you may have on Sunday so that you can come to church, and begin the metamorphosis to become the person God made you to be?
For more on becoming the person God intends for you to be, listen to http://stmarksplumstead.org/sermons/the-debt-we-cannot-repay/