Yesterday I preached a sermon about change and transformation. It’s a popular topic these days because virtually everyone in the church and outside of it is looking for something more from life. There is a growing emptiness among us because people are tired. They are virtually exhausted from doing the same thing day in and day out and still not getting the results they hope for. Particularly in the church, we mistake salvation for some sort of instant formula for happiness. But the truth is that life doesn’t change because we become a Christian; we are the ones who change. But if you expect it to be the other way around, you set yourself up to be continually frustrated and wondering why certain things always seem to be happening in your life. Life is what it is. It is full of ups and downs, ebbs and flows. It is constantly moving and changing; and the only way to navigate through is to grow along with the change. So rather than praying that God would change your life; my prayer for you today is “God please change us”. Change our mindsets, change our behavior, change the dysfunctional pattersn that we aren’t even aware of. Help us to be the change we want to experience in our everyday lives.
I created a small check list in my sermon for to people evaluate their need for change; so many people asked for a copy, I decided to put it in today’s blog. So take a look at the list and see how many things apply to you.
1. You do the same thing over and over and keep hoping for a different result
2. The way you do things makes life harder than it has to be
3. You are always tired and worn out
4. You operate in isolation, like it’s you against the world
5. You haven’t grown; the behavior patterns and habits you had last year, you are still doing this year
6. You don’t look forward to the life you have. You are constantly wishing you had something else.
The scripture that was used was taken from John 4; 1-24 (the woman at the well). This woman had all of these issues and more, but like so many of us she almost missed her opportunity for change. Sometimes we can be so stuck in our everyday patterns and our dead end life that we become blind to the fact of what God can do for us. God is always pursing us and presenting us with the opportunity for transformation. God knows that we are weary, bored, and longing for more; and because He came to bring us life abundantly, He faithfully shows up. But we must take advantage of the opportunity. So here is my list of things we must be willing to do if we sincerely want to experience something new and different.
1. Get out of your story: When Jesus ask the woman for a drink, she immediately went into her story. She tells him that he is a Jew and she is a Samaratian. So rather than responding to the opportunity, she begins talking about all of her limitations. So often we do the same. God opens the door of favor and blessings, and we are so used to who we’ve been that we are become closed to who we could become.
2. Recognize that you don’t know everything: When Jesus tells the woman that he is the “gift of God” and able to give her living water, instead of taking advantage of what is being offered to her, she is distracted because she can’t figure out how Jesus is able to do what he says he can do. For real change to happen, we must accept that God’s ways are not are ways and his thoughts are not our thoughts. Change is not for those who understand everything, it is simply for those who are open to receive it.
3. Be willing to tell the truth about your issues and what you struggle with. Transformation was able to come into the Samaritian woman’s life because she was willing to admit that she had a history of failed relationships. Until you are willing to admit that what you are doing is not working, God will not give you what will.
4. We must not just tell the truth one time; but true life change happens when you live in the truth everyday. Sometimes our most honest moment is when we lay ourselves on the alter and give our lives to Christ; but God requires that we worship in spirit and in truth, which means everday we must be honest about where we are in our faith walk. We must make truthful confessions about what is really going on within us. When that truth connects with God’s spirit, something supernatural is bound to happen. What once was a bondage can easily become a blessing if we are ready to get real.
Are you weary today? Are you longing for something new in your life. Are you in need of joy that rises above every kind of circumstance. If so, today is your opportunity. God has gone out of his way just to meet with you. Don’t miss your moment. Don’t miss the miracle.
Isaiah 55: 1-2
“Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come buy and eat. Come, buy wine and milk and without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy?”
Something to Think About…
Think about a time in your life when you almost missed a God opportunity. Intentionally open yourself up to every possibility this week. Get out of your same old story and move beyond what you understand. Be honest about your issues and watch God make a miracle out of you. Have a great Monday and a purpose-filled week.