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Pointers along the way #579

Healing of the heart
- Jacob Ninan

When someone comes to Christ, he repents of his sins and his sinful life and receives forgiveness of sins by believing Jesus has taken his punishment on Himself. Then the process of transformation begins, where he is going to be made like Jesus a little by little. Sad to say many believe that the first part is all there is, or that it covers everything needed in life. As a result their lives continue to be practically the same as before they came to Christ, except that they now believe all they do is forgiven. In order for the transformation to take place, we must know two things, what God has prepared for us and also where we stand now in reality in relation to that. Again here, some people make the mistake of thinking of only what God has prepared, hoping that God will do all that for them, and some others make the mistake of thinking that they have to somehow make themselves like Jesus.

Where do we stand now in reality? Because of the Fall, we are all born with tendencies towards irrational and illogical thinking, setting wrong goals for ourselves and feeling lots of negative thoughts. On top of that, some of the experiences we have gone through from childhood have imposed on us certain wrong patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving. So there is really a lot of baggage from our fallen nature and experiences that need to be corrected and then to be replaced with the life and character of Jesus.

Thankfully, God has promised to carry out this transformation for everyone who becomes His child (Ro.8:29). He has also promised to do this by writing His laws upon our heart, giving us a new spirit and causing us to walk in His ways (Ez.36:26,27). But this is not going to happen automatically just because we have been born again, because we have to 'want' to be changed into His image, and we have to 'ask' Him to do it in us (v.37). This wanting and asking are also not one time events where we dedicate our lives to Him. But it is an ongoing process where God does what He has promised and we keep acknowledging our need and asking Him for this transformation. God works in us to do will and do His pleasure, and we then receive that strength and actually will and do His pleasure (Php.2:12,13).

Now we can see that we can make mistakes in so many different ways and then put the blame on God saying He has not done what He has promised. Some of us say all we need is faith. They think that anything we do is 'works' and not acceptable to God. But faith without works won't work (Jas.2:17)! If we say we have faith but do not do the things our faith tells us, we won't get the result.

It is never God's mistake. If we have held wrong understanding of God's ways, we can see that it has not produced what we thought would happen. What we need to do is not to complain, but to ask Him to show us where we are going wrong, give us strength to do what we ought to do, and then help us to do things rightly. God's promises are always true.


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