Old and new, wrecked and fixed, upgraded and better than it was.
What do you mean by that?
Long story shortened, it has to do with our car and each of us as well. It wasn’t really old, a 2016 model we bought in ’15, now it looks new again. It was wrecked a few weeks ago, now it is fixed. As far as the “upgraded and better” part, that doesn’t apply to the car exactly. It does, however, apply to more than one thing in our lives I suppose. I am building a new computer, kinda, using someone’s old hard drive so it is going to be upgraded and better than it was.
The other part of that is that when we come to know Jesus and He lives in our hearts, we become upgraded and better than we were before. We have our hearts (our soul really) cleaned up and given a shiny brand-new outside and we are changed from the inside out. Gradually, as we study the Bible to learn more about God and Jesus and what we are expected to do with this new life, we become more like Jesus.
It isn’t an immediate transformation and sometimes old habits and patterns in our lives linger on. Some for longer than we would like. But, eventually, if we are diligent with our Bible study, we will become more like Jesus. Granted, we can’t walk on water or calm a storm like He could, but we will know what grieved His heart about us and others in our world. We will begin, like baby steps, to understand what righteous anger and indignation means. We will also learn to take those problems to God and leave them there.
Some people may say that “living like that is a cop-out”, but it isn’t. It is harder to pray about something which is wrong, whether it is a wrong done to us or our family, and then leave the problem in God’s hands. Because you know just as well as I do that humans want to fix things ourselves. We usually make the problem worse and then we really have some serious praying and soul-searching to do.
No, being transformed into the likeness of Jesus is not an instant or overnight process…it takes time. It is true that His Spirit comes into your heart when you ask Him to come, but the change is usually hampered by our nature. What you did prior to realizing that you needed Jesus in your heart, that part of you still fights with your new Spirit and causes your old habits and desires to cause you to stumble in your walk with Jesus.
This one thing, which many preachers don’t talk about, causes many people to give up and turn back to their old life and their sinful lives, even after giving their life to Jesus. These are the ones which Jesus was speaking about when He told the parable about the thorns and the cares of the world. “Lacking a root, the seed sprung up but quickly withered away“; being a Christian is not an immediate change nor is it complete at the beginning. You and I won’t be complete in our transformation until we stand with Him in heaven, but with study and prayer in God’s Word we can strive to be more like Him while we are still in our bodies.
Seek Him to become an upgraded and better vessel for His Spirit and strive to be more like Him as much as it is possible to do. Seek Him so that your ministry will be better than mine or others so that He can say to you, “Well done, my faithful servant”.