Gospel Changing

Intentional posture #5 is about heart surgery. Luckily we do not have to be the patient and surgeon. We only need to be good patients. We  have to be honest with ourselves about ourselves. There is nothing honorable about hiding symptoms from your cardiologist, and the same applies spiritually. The truth is, none of us have spiritual bragging rights, only a savior to celebrate. None of us have “arrived.” None of us fully reflect Christlikeness, yet in Christ we must always be growing towards Jesus’ way of life. For the next 6 months we are committed to intentional transformation. By identifying that which keeps us from less than Christlikeness–not mere symptoms, but sin–we can then begin to experience real spiritual growth.

changing_trans_monoWe are so good at spiritualizing unspirituality. In other words, we count religiosity–actions accepted as good things within the faith community–to cloak the fact we are merely becoming more like Christ. The thing about light, though, is the closer you get to it’s glow the more exposed you become. We like to pretend that not being entangled in “big” sins makes us super-spiritual, yet the closer we get to Christ the more we realize there are still growth edges–places in our heart that need shaped and made holy. Maybe they are “big” sins you’ve just kept hidden from your religious circles. Perhaps they are more invisible to others: thought life, fearfulness, jealousy, insecurity, anger, lust, materialism, and on and on.

Over the next 6 months we have accepted the challenge of identifying 6 different growth edges that are less than Christ-like. Six different ways we know in our heart are strongholds of sin and dampers on the Holy Spirit in our lives. This is not about 6 months of increased effort of growing in will-power to overcome these things. The next 6 months is simply a period of time we intend to surrender to the work of Christ; this is 6 months of allowing the Heart Surgeon to work his power and bring about spiritual transformation.

Dallas Willard wrote a great book (which is highly recommended), the title of which if fitting to understand what this challenge is about. Allow these 6 months to be a period of intentional posturing that Christ might bring about a “renovation of the heart.” See 2 Peter 1:3-11.