Transformation and Testimony | Chloride Devotional
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come2 Corinthians 5:17 – ESV
“The old has passed away… the new has come…” Think about that for a second; think about how change makes you feel. Does it make you feel scared? The change could be good or bad. Does it make you feel uncomfortable? We get so used to our routine and what we’re used to, we know what to expect and are comfortable with what we know we should/are going to do. Does it make you feel sad? Something new also means something lost.
Imagine what the citizens in Chloride felt when times were changing and the city was falling to ruins. There had to of been several emotions from each end. On one end, they were worried what would happen to their home if they didn’t do something about mining becoming obsolete. On the other, being a mining town is all they ever understood and knew, they were comfortable with how things ran there. Notice, however, how it took select people to notice it’s worth among the decay.
Transformation Begins with a Step
The people of Chloride could have let fear paralyze them, however, there were moments of hope such as the artist who painted the murals on the rocks. The artist saw something about the town and invested into it. God does the same with us. Among our decay, among our rotting sin-filled hearts, God sees something in us… He sees His image, His creation. Like Chloride, just existing is enough worth for God to pursue us. He takes the first step toward us, reaching out His merciful hand to help us.
“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for His own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”1 Peter 2:9 – ESV
God calls us. What stops us though? What typically deters people away from God’s call… from His transformation? You got it… change! The thing is, though, with change, we have a distorted view of what it can look like, about how it will affect our lives. How do we lean into God’s call if we are afraid of Him stepping toward us?
Transformation to Thrive
See, Chloride was only surviving as a mining town, but they were spiraling. Mining was not strong enough to support the changing waves of life. This happens when we rely on ourselves. We simply survive. The sinful nature is not strong enough to support the storms that life musters. So, why do we want change? To thrive! We don’t have to cave to our own downfall because there is One who has cared enough to build us back up as a new creation. If we lean into the change the Spirit is stirring deep within our souls.
Change isn’t always scary. Sometimes change is the best thing that can ever happen to us, but it often comes through some of the hardest times of life. These challenges strengthen us, mold us, to help us grow and sustain the change. In humility and trust, we must understand that we are on the verge of destruction and God is stepping toward us to lovingly embrace us to protect us from our self-destruction. Additionally, He gives us what we need to prepare for change through prayer, His word, and the body of Christ, the Church.
Share your Testimony from the Rooftops
God certainly directs and guides through personal methods with prayer and His word, but we must not forget the experiential method that blesses our lives, that is, Christian community. The people of Chloride were very proud of the sights that tourists could see and the way they have transformed. Although their past was gone, it served to point people to that which sustains it today… tourism.
When we are confused and scared about change, there are others who have cautiously walked through change and are transformed confidently into a new creation. These testimonies reassure us that change is not what we thought it was. Those who profess their testimony with joy are a statement to the joy that comes through change and helps us to lean more confidently into God’s steps toward us.
“Therefore do no be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me His prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God.”2 Timothy 1:8 – ESV
Some people might be cynical about the change that has occurred in you because, likewise, they do not like change either. That is what is so amazing about testimony, though! It doesn’t care what other people think because the one who has been changed is so elated at its relief that nothing will hold that testimony back, not even suffering. This fuels the one changed as they use this to propel forward in that change and continue leaning into the Spirit’s work in their hearts. So, I ask this again. How do you feel about change?