Pastoral Perspectives

“Be Transformed!”

How do we view ourselves? How do we view life? Are we satisfied with what we are or how we have been? Look at life itself! Life is drastically changing. We reckon that life with Christ is so much different from life without Christ. How about we who are in Christ? Do we live according to what we are called to be? We are children of the Light and of the Day. We are called to be different! How do others view us? Do they see the wonderful changes wrought by the Spirit of God in our lives? Look at the world! The world is changing around us. Things are changing around us. Events are happening which surprise us and at times, shock us. We cannot understand what is going on and why this is so. We all know that change is inevitable. We all know and believe that God is Sovereign and He is still in control. We cannot control what is happening around us but our gracious and merciful God can. He is the great and almighty God and there is no one like Him. He is trustworthy. We can trust in the great faithfulness of God. We do not have to worry about the things happening around us. We just need to trust God and be faithful to Him. God is able to transform us and our ways and thoughts. He is able to give us beauty for ashes.

Butterflies and caterpillars are the wonderful creations of God. Our mind needs to be renewed. Our life needs to be transformed. I was reminded of this verse in 2 Corinthians 3:18 ESV, “And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.” I was also reminded of another verse in 2 Corinthians 5:17 ESV, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” There is a real need to yield ourselves moment by moment to Christ’s Lordship over our life. Remember, you who are in Christ are a new creation. We should not carry on doing what we used to do, pleasing our sinful nature but we, with God’s guidance through His Word, shall be able to demonstrate to the world around us that we are a new creation, a transformed person in Christ. Habits, especially those which displease God, need to be broken. When we come to Christ, we are placing our trust in Him, not only to be our Saviour, but also to be our Lord, trusting Him to transform us to be like Him. Do we believe that Jesus Christ is able to transform us by the power of the Holy Spirit? If we believe, then it is time to stop sinning and start submitting ourselves to the Lordship of Christ and be obedient to His life-transforming Word.

Remember, we cannot change ourselves but only God can. Look at the life of the apostle Peter and apostle Paul. Read about them in the Bible and see how God had transformed them and be amazed. For the apostle Peter, he was transformed from a coward to a great communicator of the Gospel. For the apostle Paul, he was transformed from a persecutor to a great preacher of the Gospel. What God wants to see in our lives is obedience and submission! He does not want to see sacrifices and services but obedience and submission. We need to recognise that we need to cooperate with God and His Spirit, allowing Him to transform us. Let us pray for personal revival: a great change in our attitudes towards God and towards what He is doing in our lives. I would encourage us to be doers of the Word and not hearers only. Listen to the Word of God and let God do His transforming work in our lives.

Who is changing me? Circumstances? People? Events? No, all these do not change me from the inside out. God is the One who is changing me and still changing me. I was once a hot-tempered person but now, by the grace of God, I have changed into a more patient person. This reminded me of a beautiful song: “He is changing me”. Let me share it here with us.

He’s changing me, my precious Jesus
I’m not the same person that I used to be.
Sometimes it’s a slow going,

But there’s a knowing,
That someday, perfect I will be.

Little by little bit every day,
Little by little bit every way,
My Jesus is changing me
(Oh yes, He’s changing me).

Since I made that turnabout face,
I’ve been walking in His grace,
My Jesus is changing me.

We need to examine our lives and ask God to do His transforming work in us. Finally, let us be transformed by the power of the Spirit of the Living God!

Pr George Ang

July 31, 2016