One of my favorite Bible words is “TRANSFORMATION.” God makes old new. He turns water into wine. He makes sick well; blind see; lame walk; deaf hear. God is a transforming God, and at the heart of the Gospel is His transformation of us.
As Jesus stands to speak in John 6, the Jews started to grumble about Him. “Isn’t this just Joseph’s son? We already know Him! How can He make these claims about Himself??” On one level, it’s hard to criticize these people’s questions. They DID know Joseph and Mary. On the other hand, they needed to look deeper – they needed transformed eyes to see something bigger God was doing.
When you and I come to God, He makes us into something new. The old passes away and behold, the new comes. In that moment, I am not who I once was. I may look the same; I (unfortunately) may slip up and act the same; but deep inside of me, my heart has been transformed. That’s because the absolute, ultimate, life-giving power that’s someday going to regenerate the entire cosmos comes into your life and takes charge. Before Christ, I was driven by my passions and your appetites. They ruled me. But no longer – I’ve been united with Him. There’s a new Sheriff in town; a new King – whatever metaphor you want to use. And He’s intent on cleaning up the neighborhood.
That’s why you and I need to get rid of our low goals. Get rid of low expectations. “I want to follow Jesus, but I’m not sure I can change. This is just who I am.” Stop that. That type of thinking is too small. You can’t possibly anticipate the magnitude of the changes that Jesus wants to make you. They’re way beyond anything you could ever dare ask or think. You are infused into the roots of Jesus Christ. The old you is dead. You have a new identity.
Even if you may still look like the old you, that’s not you any longer.