Good morning, happy Friday and blessings.
Today we are reflecting on how we know that we have gone through a true transformation in Jesus. We tend to see accountability as a means to stop us from doing “bad” things. We reinforce the idea that our spiritual evolution is about cutting out negative behaviors. But what if I just replace that time with video games or watching TV? Those are fairly benign activities, right? It becomes a lot harder to hold each other accountable to what’s genuinely profitable because it’s ultimately different for each of us.
So many of Jesus’ parables focused on the good we left undone rather than the bad that we do. This doesn’t mean the negative things we do don’t matter, but it’s a lot harder to hold someone accountable to opportunities they ignore. You’d never ask an accountability partner, “Did you neglect to visit someone in prison today? Did you neglect to clothe someone who was naked?”
Yet what we neglect to do says as much about our spiritual development as what we keep doing that we shouldn’t. When we reduce holiness to simply “stop sinning,” we become incredibly superficial and miss the big picture of what Christ’s salvation is really all about—transformation.
In the Bible transformation means “change or renewal from a life that no longer conforms to the ways of the world to one that pleases God” (Romans 12:2). This is accomplished by the renewing of our minds, an inward spiritual transformation that will manifest itself in outward actions. The Bible presents the transformed life in Christ as demonstrated through our “bearing fruit in every good work [and] growing in the knowledge of God” (Colossians 1:10). Transformation involves those who were once far from God being “drawn near” to Him through the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13).
Paul lists the fruit that should be evident in those who are led by God’s Spirit and who have been transformed as “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Now I ask you; Are you showing fruits of transformation?