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Spring Cleaning

Posted on April 11, 2018 at 11:45 AM

Dear Saints;

Spring is a bitter-sweet time for me every year. On the one hand it is a relief from the harshness of winter (even here in Florida), but on the other it compels me to engage in the work of “spring cleaning”. The new growth in the flora and fauna is refreshing, but with that comes an increased number of projects to manage and maintain my immediate surroundings. Maybe it’s just a carryover from childhood conditioning that compels me to straighten and tidy things up in my life, but I suspect it might be a subtle working of the Spirit to produce new growth in me. I am both excited by the prospect of that which is new but wary of the cost in terms of time, energy, and money.

Spiritual growth and development conjures up the same kind of feelings in me. I want to experience the new life I have been given in Christ, but I’m a little concerned about the cost. No, strike that, I’m a lot concerned about the cost. Like everyone else I try to make the best of my present condition and often find ways to develop a “comfort zone” to live in. The prospect of new growth, however, means I must somehow leave my “comfort zone” and engage in a process of change. And my usual response to change is negative. I would generally prefer to keep things the way they are and not rock the boat because I have worked so hard to make myself comfortable! 

But change, with all its potential hassles, is an essential part of life. From the moment we are conceived until the moment we die we are engaged is a continuous process of change. Our bodies are continually changing, our personalities are changing, our relationships are changing, and our environments are changing. Whether we want it or not, like it or not, change happens! Because time marches on and waits for no one and we all live in time, our lives are filled with changes and, for some reason, Spring reminds me of that process. So, let’s face it head on, it’s time for “spring cleaning”!

Rather than view the process of change as a threat to be avoided as long as possible, we can actually see it as something to look forward to. Especially, when we see it from God’s point of view, change is actually something we need and can enjoy. One of my favorite descriptions of change is found in 2 Corinthians 3: 18, “But we all, with open face beholding in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” The change spoken of here is the most positive thing we have to look forward to as it is done by the Spirit of God for our benefit. As we consider by faith what we see reflected in the glass (mirror) of the Word of God we trust in the real person God said he made us to be in Christ. Because of that faith we are changed by the Spirit into the exact image of Jesus in the power of his Spirit.

This process of change is said to be “from glory to glory” assuring us we receive much more than we lose in the process. Rather than something to be afraid of and avoided, this change is to be welcomed and received with joy. The more we see by faith who God has made us to be in Christ, the more we can appreciate the “spring cleaning” God is doing in our lives as he changes us “into the same image”. Our part is to believe who he said he has made us to be in Christ. His part is to change us from the inside out. It is a life-long process that culminates with the ultimate changing of our bodies from mortal and corruptible into the immortal and incorruptible and “Death is swallowed up in victory”!

John

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