Summary: What is your response to the Potter today? Are you yielding all of your rights to Him so He can transform you according to His perfect plan, process and power?
Quote: Transformation is rooted in the Greek word, metamorphisis. A complete change from one form to another form happens when when a caterpillar turns in to a beautiful butterfly. That is what God wants us to experience as we speak the truth in love out of obedience and grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ.
Illustration:The motor home has allowed us to put all the conveniences of home on wheels. A camper no longer needs to contend with sleeping in a sleeping bag, cooking over a fire, or hauling water from a stream. Now he can park a fully equipped home on a cement slab in the midst of a few pine trees and hook up to a water line, a sewer line and electricity. One motor home I saw recently had a satellite dish attached on top. No more bother with dirt, no more smoke from the fire, no more drudgery of walking to the stream. Now it is possible to go camping and never have to go outside. We buy a motor home with the hope of seeing new places, of getting out into the world. Yet we deck it out with the same furnishings as in our living room. Thus nothing really changes. We may drive to a new place, set ourselves in new surrounding, but the newness goes unnoticed, for we’ve only carried along our old setting.
The adventure of new life in Christ begins when the comfortable patterns of the old life are left behind.
1. Paul knew that the impartation of information would not result in people becoming more like Christ unless they were transformed in their attitudes, behavior, and perspectives.
Too many of our contemporary ministers wrongly assume that better information will result in better people. For this reason Paul wrote, "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is - his good, pleasing and perfect will." (Rom. 12:2) Ask the Lord to help you strive to bring more transformation of those you minister to, instead of just being content to give them better kinds of information.
2. Paul realized that unless people were open to the Holy Spirit’s transforming ministries, they would become arrogant with more information.
Example: Paul wrote, "Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up. The man who thinks he knows something does not yet know as he ought to know." (I Cor. 8:1,2)
Application: Ask the Lord to help you concentrate more on helping people avoid being content to just increase in knowledge without growing in their love for God, Christians and the lost.
3. Paul expected his disciples to mature socially, emotionally, mentally, politically, educationally, spiritually, Biblically etc: Paul expected his followers to continually become more like Christ by demonstrating higher levels of spiritual, cognitive, attitudinal, behavioral, and ministry maturity.
Example: Paul wrote, "Become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ, then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming." (Eph. 4:13,14)
Application: Ask the Lord to help you to teach for transformation so that your disciples are not manipulated, deceived or lulled into complacency. Warn people that unless they are involved in being transformed they will fall into the trap of many harmful temptations such as the worries, riches and pleasures of this life.
4. Paul directed his followers to speak the truth in love so they could grow up in ALL aspects into Christ. Unless people are actively involved with teaching, witnessing or sharing the truth of scriptures with others they tend not to grow up in any aspects into Christ.
Example: There is a proportional relationship with how much we are willing to be witnesses of the good things God has given us in the scriptures and how effectively we are growing in Christ-likeness.
Application: Ask the Lord to give you the courage, the articulation and the opportunities to speak the truth of the scriptures in all kinds of occasions.
5. Paul taught His followers how to rely on the Holy Spirit to be transformed from one level of spiritual maturity to another.
Example: Paul wrote, "And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." (2 Cor. 3:18)
Example: Paul knew that believers are dependent on a knowledge of the Lord’s attributes in order to be transformed into Christ’s likeness.
Application: Ask the Lord to help you spend at least thirty minutes every morning praying and reading the scriptures to allow the Spirit of God to direct you to ways He will help you be promoted to higher levels of spiritual maturity, effectiveness and rewards.