As women, we are born into a world of change. Just walking around in female form requires a lifetime of changes that men simply don’t experience. Our culture, too, is shifting at an alarming rate and we are daily faced with the challenges of an increasingly hostile mindset toward Christianity in general. Change is an inevitable part of the human story. But change is not a part of God’s character. He remains constant and unchangeable, and we rely on that strength.
As baptized members of the Body of Christ, each of us has experienced a complete transformation from sinner to saint. For many of us, that change is not part of our memory if faith-filled parents delivered us to the font as infants. But changed we were as the Holy Spirit took up residence. Now changes are a part of our sanctified life; gradual and sometimes even indiscernible, but present nonetheless in the lives of all Christ followers. We are ranked among those who are daily “beholding the glory of the Lord, being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit” (2 Corinthians 3:18). Eventually we will behold the glory of the Lord with our own eyes and the transformation will be complete. In the meantime, we live out our lives and watch as the Lord works to bring about in us that which pleases Him. The Apostle Paul penned these words of encouragement to us in Romans 12:1-2:
I appeal to you therefore, brothers and sisters, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.
Paul instructs us to bring our very selves to God and surrender our lives unto Him. Here Paul makes reference to the idea of sacrifice as it was practiced in the Old Testament. The Old Testament believer could leave their sacrifice on the altar and walk away, back into their regular life. They could even be largely unaffected by the act of offering their sacrifice. After Jesus made the final sacrifice on the cross, that time has ended. Instead of those animal sacrifices, God is looking for our very lives and that is where transformation is necessary, because we hold onto our lives as if we were the ones in control. How quickly that illusion can be snatched from our hands! Sometimes we are not interested in placing our lives upon the altar. It would be much more convenient to leave our offering on the altar and walk away. Making that type of offering is a learned response.
This year at The Katie we will spend time in God’s Word examining three people who underwent dramatic transformation. Some of them wanted it and others did not. We will talk about Zacchaeus, who allowed his curiosity to take him up a tree to learn more about Jesus. We will consider Samson, who had change forced upon him but still managed to serve the purposes of God. And we will pray with the Tax Collector who is held up in derision by the Pharisee. Each of these stories will help to inform our own transformations and hopefully draw us personally into a place where God’s hand can further shape who we are in Him.
Plan now to join your sisters in the faith and comrades in this role of pastor’s wife as together we dive into the Word and learn with and from one another. Those who are planning this event are already praying for you and we are truly looking forward to spending this time with you. There are many things planned that will bring you laughter, challenge, fellowship, growth, fun, and refreshment. If you are struggling to pay for this event, please contact Debbie Cameron in the district office and she will take care of any financial concerns. We never want payment to be a determent to your attending. I look forward to spending time with all of you in April. If you haven’t registered yet, please do so now by clicking here. Registration ends Friday, April 7, 2017.