If we’re committed to following Jesus, God promises to transform us into the very perfection of His Son. However, Pastor Jason Mitchell reminds us that this amazing process does not happen overnight; it happens over a lifetime.
“We want instantaneous results, fast, quick. But most of the metaphors that are used in Scripture to describe spiritual formation — becoming the kind of people that God created us to be — are agricultural metaphors. Words like planting seeds, bearing fruit, putting down roots. These take time.”
“That is spiritual life: a series of small, subtle decisions we make that seemingly don’t move the dial. Yet over again and again, we make the choice to be compassionate, the choice to forgive, the choice to live with mercy. All those small choices add up to change us over time. That’s the key, over time; we have to be faithful in that way.”
When our hearts are willing to follow Christ in the small things — the daily decisions we make, the thoughts we ponder, our actions toward others — we are cultivating habits of holiness, practicing reliance on God’s way rather than our own.
“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.” Colossians 2:6-7
Jason reminds us that our salvation doesn’t depends on doing good works to earn God’s love, but rather trusting that, as we follow Jesus in obeying His Father, He will grow us into the person we were meant to become. The process is slow, but sure.
“The best things in life, the richest experiences are the ones that we invest the most into. It’s no different when it comes to the spiritual life: when it comes to growing and forming the kind of character that I believe God wants to form in us, to make us more of the image of the Son Jesus, it’s going to require that we continue to go back (to Him) again and again.”
As we turn our hearts over, moment by moment, to the loving cultivation of our Gardener, we trust His plan with this prayer:
Jesus, I’m going to follow you today, believing my roots will go deep. I may not see it today, or even tomorrow, but I will see it when I look back on this season of my life. Someday, I will see how much I have grown because I kept choosing you.
Jason Mitchell is teaching pastor at LCBC (Lives Changed By Christ) Church, a thriving church with locations throughout Pennsylvania. Through speaking and writing, Jason has influenced thousands of people to pursue Jesus with passion. He gets fired up about finding new and compelling ways to make the message of Christ relevant to people’s everyday lives.Transformation takes time - Jason Mitchell