Part 4: Changed to Transformed -What does a Transformed Follower of Christ Look Like?February 19, 2014
Jesus PlusMarch 13, 2014
I have spoke with the tongue of angels
I have held the hand of a devil
It was warm in the night
I was cold as a stone
But I still haven’t found what I’m looking for
Have you found what you’re looking for? If so I hope it’s not a he, or a she, or a place, or a thing – or a drink. Because if it is, then join with the Samaritan woman at the well in hearing Jesus’ words of caution:
“Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”1
In our quest to understand what a transformed person looks like, we asked this question in our last Putting Green:
“I can fill my voids with ___________________?”
We are all thirsty. We all have voids. We spend … waste … massive energy trying to fill them, and too often with the vapid – and impotent – glitter and/or busyness of this culture. I look back at much of my life, and I look all around me, and I see the results of our misguided attempts to fill the voids which only Jesus can fill.
Which is why he said, “I have come that they may have life,and have it to the full.”2 Jesus meant it when he said this: he did come so that through him you can have the full A+ life. You really can. And he meant it when he said “I” – because only he can fill us.
As we follow Jesus deeper into the Kingdom, his full life fills our voids. However the world promotes a litany of much better ways to fill up: “buy this, do this, date them, drink, smoke or chew this, play this, go there, watch this.”
I received this email from a man who recently saw the Light – was born again – and turned from his pursuit of the world, and is now fixing his eyes on Jesus. This is a good man; a man you would admire; a man you would say had it all; a man you would be sure was the head of a happy and full-filled family.
“Sam, I wanted to send this email to follow up about our lunch today. First and foremost, I cannot thank God enough for drastically changing my life. As I told you today, I have never seen things so clearly as I have the past 7 days.
“I was controlled by idols (phone, alcohol, busyness, social groups, etc) that had total control of my life. For some reason I was blinded by their control until last Friday and I now see how far off base I was and how little control I actually had. I was consumed with things that were all about me and what made me happy. I had no clue how studying the Bible, reading the devotionals and focusing on Christ can truly change your life.
“I thought I was doing everything right. I was working hard, providing a good life for my family, coaching my kids’ teams. But I was missing it – and badly. Work and my ‘life line,’ my cell phone, were controlling my life and were ever present.
“To my wife and children I realize I was a ticking time bomb: “When is Daddy going to explode with anger and impatience?”
“It makes me sick to think about what a destructive force I was, and didn’t have a clue. I was so blind.
“As I told you at lunch today, it feels as if I am 19 years old again without any of the modern items such as my cell and iPad and internet weighing me down and destroying my life. I know that I have a long way to go and this is a step by step process, but I am committed to living my life as Christ wanted. I also know that if Jesus had not enlightened me then I would have most likely destroyed my relationship with my wife, my relationship with my boys – and ultimately my life.
“I never understood what it meant to be saved until last Friday because not only did the Lord save me and turn my life to Christ, but he saved everything that I was in the process of destroying. Your brother forever.”
- John 4:13-14
- John 10:10
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Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.