Today I stand as a new man. A new man being reshaped every day into the man God intended me to be. But it hasn’t always been this way and it hasn’t been an easy path.
It’s funny; some of the people I’ve met over the past almost four years have trouble seeing me as the man I used to be. But on the flip side of the same token, some of people from my “old lifestyle” have a hard time seeing me any different than who I once was.
It makes me think of Paul. I like Paul and his testimony, I can relate to a lot of it. Can you imagine how some of the people viewed him after his radical conversion? There were people who couldn’t see past who he used to be.
Even Ananias was a little leery about going to him when God asked him to. Acts 9:10-15 reads “10 Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus named Ananias; and to him the Lord said in a vision, “Ananias.” And he said, “Here I am, Lord.” 11 So the Lord said to him, “Arise and go to the street called Straight, and inquire at the house of Judas for one called Saul of Tarsus, for behold, he is praying. 12 And in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hand on him, so that he might receive his sight.” 13 Then Ananias answered, “Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem. 14 And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name.” 15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.
For Paul it wasn’t about what other men thought about him but about what God thought about him. Some people probably never saw him as Paul because they only wanted to see Saul.
I have found this very same thing in my journey with Christ. I find that some people will never see me as a new creation in Christ. They only wait patiently for the “old me” to return. I pray for those that do, I pray that God would open their eyes to see. To see that the One True God is a life changer.
I used to struggle with it almost daily. I used to be so consumed by what others thought and said about me. As I have matured in my walk with Christ, those days are getting farther and farther apart. I have learned that trying to please men is foolish and takes away from the real goal. The real goal is pleasing God.
When it comes to pleasing God, boy do I mess that up sometimes. I am so far from perfect but strive daily to be who God has called me to be. I have learned that it is only in and through Christ that I can please God; only with Christ can I approach Him and His Glory. Without Jesus I am nothing. I will never be perfect while in this fleshly body but that doesn’t mean I don’t try my best to be as much like Christ as I can. It’s a journey, it’s a battle and it’s a struggle. But one that is well worth it in the end. In the end we will all have to stand before God in judgment. We will do that with or without Jesus at our side.
We are always here and available if you need help or guidance. Be blessed and remember that our strength as Christ followers comes from Jesus not ourselves.
In Christ alone