How To Be Transformed
I was meeting with a fella recently who was convinced that he was a sinner.
He had proof and all the sad fruit, a broken marriage, and hurting kids. He had asked God to forgive him but he hadn’t repented.
You see, in our time together, he revealed that he still believed he was prone to sin. And as an innate wanderer, he was hoping I would somehow help him to get God back in control of him. He wanted to be punished.
I asked, “When’s the last time you felt God’s love, His pleasure?”
He started to give me the correct answer, “I know that God so loved the world…”
I gently cut him off. “I didn’t ask for Bible verses. When is the last time you felt God’s absolute joy and laughter over your life? When was the last time you knew to your very bones that He was absolutely in love with you?”
He looked at me a little confused and he started to give me the correct answer again, “God is love. I know He loves…”
I interrupted again, “I’m not looking for what you know, here,” I said, pointing to my head. “When is the last time you experienced to the core of your being His unquestionable pleasure, His joy, His overwhelming love for you, here?” I pointed to my heart.
He stopped and began to think back through his life. After some time he looked at me with desperate tears in his eyes and said, “I can’t remember.”
“Well, that’s a problem,” I said.
He nodded in shameful agreement. He still didn’t get it.
Then I asked him a question, which to him, considering the context of our meeting, probably seemed ridiculous. “Is He pleased with you right now?”
He began to cry. “No.”
“Are you sure?” I asked.
“How can He be pleased with me right now?” He responded.
“Is God’s pleasure over who you are determined by your actions or Jesus’?” I asked, and then. “Ask Him how He sees you,” I said, smiling with joyful tears in my eyes. “I promise you, it’s good news.”
We spent the next half an hour discovering the good news. Jesus paid it all and my new friend is forgiven. We discovered together that repenting is about changing your mind regarding who He is, and just as importantly, who we are in Him. To repent is to agree with God on our value based on the price Jesus paid.
Repenting is changing our focus from sin to righteousness. You see, it’s our Father’s good pleasure to give us the Kingdom (see Luke 12:32), the finished work of the cross.
Sin is the crisis of identity. Jesus paid the price so that we could be free so that we would no longer be forced to live in crisis.
We are no longer sinners needing to be punished, we are saints living in the greater revelation of His good pleasure. In Christ, we are not desperate for Him to be in control, we are confident and free in the Holy Spirit power of self-control (Gal 5).
Sin separates us from who He truly is and how He truly sees us. But when we live in a revelation of His good pleasure, the same good pleasure Jesus lived in and then purchased access to, sin has no chance to separate us from our Father. Nothing can separate us from His love (Rom 8).
My new friend experienced such great transformation that day as He tasted the love of God and truly repented.
I pray you would be transformed by His good pleasure today.
Jason Clark is a writer, speaker and lead communicator at A Family Story ministries. His mission is to encourage sons and daughters to grow sure in the love of an always-good heavenly Father. He and his wife, Karen, live in North Carolina with their three children.
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Thank you, Jason.
This is something that God has been teaching me over and over, getting me to know it down to my bones. This was just another well-timed reminder and confirmation.
Getting this "down to our bones" it’s such a sweet transformative journey!
Thanks for sharing. Grace over you and yours today!
Hey Jason, I have been feeling this way for over 3 months. I have been feeling deep dark depression and suicidal thoughts. Like the guy said, I know He loves me in some area of who I am, probably my spirit. But I haven’t felt it, but really quite the opposite. My soul doesn’t seem to believe He loves me. I feel He has forgotten me as I am still single and have no person in sight but a great longing for a relationship. If he wants me to feel, to know his joy, why has he chosen to withhold this from me? Please don’t mention waiting. I’ve waited enough. I’m older than most people who complain of waiting on God for this. If He doesn’t want to do this for me, what in hell am I waiting for?
I don’t know the answer to this question.
I can tell you that while I don’t know your particular ache, I have my own story; promises from God that are decades old and yet unfulfilled, promises I have been faithful to believe Him for. Plain and simple, while I don’t know your journey, I know the deep ache and often the anger and depression that can accompany waiting.
And I have one foundational faith that sustains me. It’s simply this
"I don’t know, but He’s good."
Bro, I could speak on the transformational power and grace of His always good love with every breath in my body and not come close to describing Him.
"I don’t know but He’s good" has sustained me and transformed me and in the darkest moments, when disappointment comes like a fist to the jaw, "I don’t know but He’s good" has been the invitation into intimacy time and again.
All that said, I pray grace for the spirit of breakthrough over you. I pray the Father’s good pleasure is available to you. I pray favor and intimacy over every God relationship in your life. I break off despair and invite measureless love to overwhelm you.
Love ya man