Transformation…Becoming More Like Christ (Romans 12:1-2)
Romans 12:1-2, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
A young boy visited his grandfather’s butterfly farm and was amazed at what he learned. His grandfather showed him the cocoon’s and explained to the young boy about the transformation process (egg, larva [caterpillar], pupa [chrysalis], butterfly). The grandson noticed a particular cocoon where a butterfly was struggling to get out. While his grandfather was not looking he took a small twig and released the caterpillar from its tight quarters. A beautiful butterfly sprang forth in life but quickly fell to the ground and died. The young boy tearfully asked his grandfather why the butterfly didn’t survive? The grandfather said, “You let him out too soon. His struggle is what makes him strong. If he does not fight his way out, he will not have the strength to survive”
What went wrong? The struggle the butterfly went through to escape its cocoon was necessary to force blood into its wings so it could fly. Without it, the butterfly couldn’t survive. God is willing to do whatever it takes to make us more like Christ. Trust Him through it. Taking us through suffering, not out of it, is one of the primary means that the Spirit uses today in bringing us to God.
One of the most valuable lessons I have learned in life is to never sell my struggles short. They may be uncomfortable. They may cause great pain. But they always do me more good than harm. This is God’s purpose behind the struggles we face in life. Without them, we couldn’t survive. I will even go a step further and say that without them, we can’t thrive in the Christian life. We must learn to patiently endure them instead of looking for an easy way out. That is the way to fly.
God provides everything for the transformation. Just like a caterpillar, a believer’s transformation begins in the mind as the Word of God compels dying to self, shedding our will, and submitting to God’s will. Though process-time varies, you can be assured your chrysalis is a work protected by your Creator and transformed for His glory!
It is our travail that gives way to our triumph. Too often we ask the Lord to release us from our burdens, when in reality, those very burdens are being used by God to develop patience, devotion, and strength. It is the struggle that makes us strong. Keep fighting and believing your way through; on the other side you will break forth in liberty and freedom from that adverse circumstance as a beautiful testimony of God’s transforming power and grace.
PRAYER: Father, teach me that I may know how to be more Christlike that I may please You and that You would be glorified. I know that I will never accomplish this without the Holy Spirit. So, right now I yield to Him. In Jesus name, Amen!
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.