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Pastor’s Desk: An Amazing Truth

Posted on Tuesday, July 9, 2024 at 4:49 pm

Pastor Marcus Blair, Grandview Baptist Church

Romans 12:2:

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

I have a vivid childhood memory of the day I learned an amazing truth. Our first-grade teacher took us to the school library and we were immediately excited to see a film projector. Watching a movie at school was always fun, but this was different. The video showed a caterpillar cocoon itself. Until that very moment, no one had ever told me about metamorphosis. I remember seeing the long, spindly legs emerge from the cocoon, followed by brilliant butterfly wings. My little mind just couldn’t believe it. How was this possible? How could a creepy-crawly caterpillar be completely transformed?

Adult life has a way of extinguishing our sense of wonder, so most of us are no longer amazed by what I saw that day. But think about it: God is so amazing, he has created things in nature that totally transform. Tadpoles are the same way. What starts as one thing, ends up completely different. I believe God put those things in the natural world to demonstrate a deeply spiritual truth: he is a transformative God, who can change a caterpillar into a butterfly, so he can certainly change me as well.

In Romans 12:2, we are told to not conform to the world. To be conformed is to fit a pattern. The word comes to us from the art of pottery. Once a potter has mastered creating a plate or bowl, he or she can make a thousand more of them in exactly the same pattern. In our world, there is much conformity. Most people strive to fit in, to be like others. The Bible tells us there is a better way. Instead of being conformed like one plate among millions, we must be transformed like the glorious butterfly.

The problem is, most people are convinced they can not really change. The addict believes he will never be free. The depressed person thinks she will never feel joy again. The anxious, stressed out teen thinks life must always be like this. We have decided there is nothing that can transform us. But God says differently. Romans 12:2 shows us the path to real metamorphosis: the renewing of your mind.

What, exactly, is this mind renewal process? How can we get it? By surrendering our thoughts to God. Most people, including many Christians, feel we should work to change our actions, but our minds can remain a free zone where we think exactly as we want to think. Unfortunately, this is a lie from our enemy, Satan. What you think is what you end up doing. Sin begins in the mind, by thinking about it, considering it, long before we act. Our thinking patterns are well-worn paths, like cattle trails in a field, that don’t just need to be cleaned, but need to be transformed. Only God can create the butterfly’s metamorphosis. In just the same way, only God can author your own metamorphosis of the mind.

Christians need to think like Christians. We all get sad from time to time, but there is no need to live there. God provides joy instead, through the Holy Spirit. We all worry and feel stress. That is part and parcel of being a human. But we don’t have to live in that anxiety. God provides peace, once again through the Holy Spirit. The problem isn’t that God refuses to help us. The problem is, our broken, sinful thought patterns block us from receiving the aid of the Lord.

Do you have thoughts that you’d like to see change? First, we must believe it is possible. Then, we must trust that God is the source of such transformation. Finally, we must give God free reign in our minds and allow him to do what he does best: change things.