A Work in Progress
1 Thessalonians 5:24, “God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful.”
Have you ever watched the show where people buy a rundown house, renovate it, then flip it for a profit? Or maybe you've taken on some home renovations in your own home.
What usually happens? Does everything work out with no problems? You're probably shaking your head no because you know what I'm talking about. Inevitably once you start digging into the renovations there is a problem with load bearing walls, plumbing, foundation issues, the previous owners had no clue what they were doing and simply made a bigger problem for the next person.
I've been there and I bet many others have too. A small project turns into months of a bigger project and you hope you have enough in the budget to cover the hidden problems that come up. Yet in the end it all comes together, and the results are what you wanted and the work, sweat, and tears are worth it.
Now, have you ever tried to fix someone or even yourself? If I were to ask you what you'd like to change about yourself would I hear things like my hair- curlier or straighter, I want to be taller maybe shorter. Maybe there's a few extra rolls or wrinkles we'd like to lose. Although some of this can't be changed, there are things we can do to change some things about our outward appearance. It could be a slow process and we might find a few hiccups along the way, maybe even some setbacks. We are simply a work in progress, but there will come a day when we see the end results that we wanted and are happy.
These changes are all on the outside and more about our vain ideas of appearance because what does the Lord tell us in 1 Samuel 16:7, “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
Are there things you feel need some renovating with your spirit, with your heart? I believe all of us can say yes, we are definitely not where God wants us to be, we are still under construction and we will be until the day of salvation.
The good news is that when we invite Jesus to live in our lives, to lead our lives, He begins those renovations and has even given us a map to follow and the Holy Spirit to help. When we learn what Jesus means in Galatians 5:22-23, “But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things”, we can begin to live these fruits versus the corrupt ways of the world, “When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God.”- Galatians 5:19-21.
When we choose to live with Jesus in our life and heart, He begins sanctifying us and helps us grow into who He created us to be. This process won't happen overnight because we tend to cause setbacks when we think we've got it under control and stop letting the Lord lead. We are still living in this world of sin with our sinful desires that will overrule at times. That’s okay as long as we are trying to move forward, trusting Jesus, then we will be able to move closer to Jesus and further away from the world. Also, God won't give up, He has a plan for your life and He will see it through to salvation. “And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.”- Philippians 1:6.
Yes, you can choose to get caught up in the world's ideas of “beautiful” and never feel good enough. Or you can choose to let Jesus work on your heart and soul in preparing you for salvation. We are His, created in His image and God has only the best plan for our lives. Even when we have setbacks (trials, heartaches, etc.), in the end we will be perfect as God planned. God is the Author and source of our spiritual progress- John 15:5.
No matter what you'd like to change about yourself inward or outward. Trust the Lord, He is working with you and in His time we all will be complete for Heaven. In the meantime believe you are perfect the way you are because God made you, chose you, and loves you.
Following is a song that came to mind while I wrote this that sums up God and all we go through.
One way we can continually learn to be more Christlike and allow God to work in us in by opening the Bible and studying it's pages. Throughout the Old and New Testament God is sharing with us what He wants for us, what He's done for us, what He's doing for us, and what He has in store for us. When we read the scriptures God is with us and we can grow our relationship with Him, gain wisdom, strength, and direction from Him and grow ever more to be like Jesus. Jesus has begun a good work in us and He daily will continue to help us grow. We're going to start our new study through 1-3 John beginning with 1 John 1:5-10. Back in 2021 we did a study through 1 John but I believe there is always more we can learn or relearn when we go back to scripture even when we've read it before. I hope you can join me and allow the Holy Spirit to speak to you and guide you as we go through the next few books in the Bible.
Study 1, 1 John 1:5-10- https://www.docdroid.net/pPuj9dV/study-1-docx
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