Are you aware that God has a plan for each and everyone of us and that plan is as unique and individual as we are after all, Jeremiah 29:11-12 says “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.
As outlined in Part I—New Year New You—the four steps to finding your Godly purpose are:
Step 1: Survey where you are in your walk with God
Step 2: Pray for guidance and direction
Step 3: Establish Relationships with others who are focused on God
Step 4: Identify & change things in your life that are not in line with God’s word
Once you have completed these steps you may ask, “Now what, where do I go from here?”
Romans 12:2 says … Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
To be transformed is to change in your form, your external appearance, or structure, the way you are made up, your essence your way of thinking and being. It’s to a have complete metamorphoses or profound and complete change.
When you begin to go through a Godly transformation, it will be noticeable in many ways but there are three areas that I would like to touch upon:
1. Your thoughts and actions
2. Your outer appearance
3. Your reception by others
1 Corinthians 13:11 … When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. Think about it for a moment, you may not have begun to physically age as you embark on living your Godly purpose but you are growing spiritually, and this should be evident.
Thoughts and Actions
- Are you still comfortable holding the same conversations you had before you began this journey?
- Do you still entertain thoughts and desires that are not aligned with God’s word?
- When faced with tough decisions are you still using worldly standards to make your decisions or have you begun to seek out advice and study what the scriptures say about your personal situation?
Another area where your transformation should be evident is your outer appearance. Let’s consider Moses’ appearance after spending time with God. Exodus 34:29 says ... When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the two tablets of the covenant law in his hands, he was not aware that his face was radiant because he had spoken with the Lord.
Your Outer Appearance
- During your interactions with others, is it clear to them by your attitude and speech that you are reading your Bible and praying?
- What about in your everyday appearance? Can others tell by your style of dress that you are seeking God’s approval and not attempting to gain the approval of man?
- How about simply where you appear? Do you frequent places that would reflect your desire to walk in your Godly purpose? Or are you living a double life?
Which leads into the last point I would like to touch on; I would like for us to take a walk through Mark 5:1-20 and look at the transformation of a demon possessed man:
They went across the lake to the region of the Gerasenes. When Jesus got out of the boat, a man with an impure spirit came from the tombs to meet him. This man lived in the tombs, and no one could bind him anymore, not even with a chain. For he had often been chained hand and foot, but he tore the chains apart and broke the irons on his feet. No one was strong enough to subdue him. Night and day among the tombs and in the hills he would cry out and cut himself with stones.
- Now would you say this is someone that others would look to for guidance and counsel?
- It appears that he is a forgotten man, a man cast aside because Man’s way could not change him … the scriptures go on to say …
When he saw Jesus from a distance, he ran and fell on his knees in front of him. He shouted at the top of his voice, “What do you want with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? In God’s name don’t torture me!” For Jesus had said to him, “Come out of this man, you impure spirit!”
Then Jesus asked him, “What is your name?”
“My name is Legion,” he replied, “for we are many.” And he begged Jesus again and again not to send them out of the area.
- When taking a closer look, we see a man aware of Jesus
- A man who is not too prideful to acknowledge Jesus (Yes, you may say well what did he have to lose, but think about what do we have to lose when in our prideful states we attempt to fix ourselves instead of turning to God.)
A large herd of pigs was feeding on the nearby hillside. The demons begged Jesus, “Send us among the pigs; allow us to go into them.” He gave them permission, and the impure spirits came out and went into the pigs. The herd, about two thousand in number, rushed down the steep bank into the lake and were drowned.
- Isaiah 55:10-11 tells us that God’s word does not come back empty and Matthew 7:7-11 ensures us that if we ask it will be given to us
- We see these scriptures come to life when this demon possessed man, a man shut away from society and forced to live among the caves, humbly begs Jesus to send the demons into a herd of pigs and his request is immediately granted
- I don’t recall reading where Jesus said he had to think about it or that the man should perform so many acts of righteousness before his request was granted … let’s continue on …
Those tending the pigs ran off and reported this in the town and countryside, and the people went out to see what had happened. When they came to Jesus, they saw the man who had been possessed by the legion of demons, sitting there, dressed and in his right mind; and they were afraid. Those who had seen it told the people what had happened to the demon-possessed man—and told about the pigs as well. Then the people began to plead with Jesus to leave their region.
- I want to pause for a moment here to point out something
- Not everyone will accept your changes and have faith in the person you are becoming
- 1 Corinthians 1:18-19 says For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.”
- So I encourage you to not become saddened if the onlookers don’t readily acknowledge or accept your changes … the scriptures go on to say …
As Jesus was getting into the boat, the man who had been demon-possessed begged to go with him. Jesus did not let him, but said, “Go home to your own people and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” So the man went away and began to tell in the Decapolis how much Jesus had done for him. And all the people were amazed.
- Again we see the humility and the heart of this man
- He recognizes that he had nothing to do with his change but Jesus made all the difference in his life
- He also was humble enough to accept the instructions that he was given
- Instead of becoming discouraged because Jesus did not allow him to join him, the scriptures say that he went away and began to tell in the Decapolis what Jesus had don for him
- Now, stop for a moment, he didn’t just go to his family or his close friends
- The scriptures say he went to the Decapolis—a district on the east and south-east of the Sea of Galilee containing 10 cities, whose residents where primarily Greeks
- However, it says that all the people were amazed
Your Reception by others
- Are you becoming a Godly influence on those around you?
- Do you find others beginning to seek you out for guidance and counsel?
- Are the changes you are making noticeable in your everyday life?
Remember, God is a God of grace and each new day provides us with the opportunity to begin again. Choose God and may the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Welcome to the first day of the rest of your life!!!
To learn more about Dr. Crystal and the services she provides, visit www.drcrystal.weebly.com.