Many believers talk about their wish to be transformed. They look on their lives and they hardly can see the fruit of the Spirit of God in their lives. So they feverishly pray to God to change them into His image being quite embarrassed about all they see. Begging God to change them… and this best as soon as possible!
They have no idea what they’re asking God for having the perception God somehow would snap His fingers and they’re changed in an instant.
If they would know they’re begging God for sending pain, trouble and quite irritating incidents to happen in their lives, I don’t know how many would still ask Him for change anymore.
I’m not speaking about superficial, half-committed and world-minded believers here but the ones loving Jesus with all their heart and wanting to see Him glorified in their lives.
They’re serious about following Jesus… but they simply have no knowledge about God’s work of transformation and how this is showing up in the reality of their lives. This isn’t taught in today churches anymore… so they’re prone to quite a bumpy ride in their emotions when God hearing their prayers is starting His work in and on them.
In the beginning of our walk with God we
got convicted by the Holy Spirit about our lost state. All our failures and
bondages are standing before our eyes and we cry to God for His mercy and
forgiveness of sin.
We ask the Lord to heal us and grant us a new heart with a new spirit infilled by His Holy Spirit.
After receiving new life from God we have to learn to mature in faith, learn to be spirit-minded and resist the motions of our flesh - still very much present in our lives.
Among all the lessons we have to learn there is one lesson of prime importance: to discern between the corrective words of God’s Spirit and the accusations of the enemy of our soul. This guy is clever enough to disguise himself behind bible verses to bind us by reminding us on our past failures. In spite of these - quite tricky - arrangements God’s Spirit is helping us to make a difference between His correction giving us release and freedom - and the words of the enemy leading us into a death-spiral ending in depression and bondage.
This is a crucial lesson each believer has to learn. Though we’re eager to accept correction and willingly submit to God’s correction – yes, even ask Him to do so more – not every “revelation” is from God and we have to learn the difference in the voice speaking to us.
It is so important we learn this… and with
grieve I have to assert the obvious reality visible among believers today
gives no positive outlook at all: it is a just a minority who learned this
lesson as taught by the Spirit of God.
The results are obvious… and they prove the “teacher” we have learned from.
True victory and change just come with our God… and never by listening to an “Angel of light”. Yes, we might have some exalted sensations in the beginning just to awaken with a puzzling hangover experience finding it was just an illusion.
We will find ourselves in a depression
paralyzing our lives… or the other extreme, always hunting after new
spiritual sensations pushing us up we use like drugs numbing the dire
reality we find ourselves in.
There’s a legalistic attitude, too - and the opposite the “big freedom”! Both are the results of not having heard God’s Spirit as our teacher in those crucial lessons of discerning the “right” voice.
But let’s continue with the positive
course a life of a believer will take listening and following the
“right” voice of God’s Spirit.
This believer will see change and victory showing up in his daily life. He will learn to successfully persevere in the daily fight of faith ordered for us by God. He will grow in faith and as more he will see God in his life love towards his Savior will grow… and coming with it: the desire to glorify Him even more.
At some time in life the prayer will come: “Lord, transform me! I want Jesus to be seen through me – the fruit of God’s Spirit becoming visible in my life!”
As I said in the beginning: We actually have no hunch about what we’re asking God here to do – but it is a plea worked out in us by His Spirit so you can bet on this: God won’t turn you down on this one! We know from God’s word we already have the pleas we ask after His will! (1.Jo. 5:14)
Well, to do this work God has no other chance but to go after the deep roots driving humanity!
You don’t have to make a big list about them - they are: abandonment, fear, pride, covetousness and the desires of our physical body.
God has to cut deep into us to
expose them prior their removal… and yes, this isn’t
“Glory, Hallelujah!” at all. This is deep pain!
God will allow us to go through situations we suddenly have to face the reality of our depraved, sinful old nature again… and this is quite irritating in the beginning.
We have learned to resist the “accuser of
the brethren” bringing us under self-condemnation by resisting him with the
word of God in our mouths proclaiming the power of Jesus’ blood cleansing us
from all iniquity… but now being in God’s process all this ugliness becoming
visible for us again this won’t work anymore!
Though we first try to push it away (by misunderstanding God’s work here) – we will suddenly find out: It’s still there! Why can’t I send it away in Jesus’ name anymore? Why? Have I grieved the Holy Spirit without knowing it? Has God forsaken me? Even some are asking: “Is it back to the basics now?” being irritated and confused.
Thoughts like these are very common for every believer God is starting His work of transformation in.
Just by all that is taught today nobody knows about the truth: It’s God! It’s God’s deepest work on me!
We have to learn that this isn’t the enemy this time - but it’s the work we asked God for to do in our lives.
For a better understanding:
First - comes the process of cleansing/salvation
The Spirit of God is convicting us about our sin and we’re confessing it before God. The blood of Jesus washes us from all iniquity, brakes our bondages setting us free. Becoming a new creation in Christ we receive a new heart infilled by the Spirit of God.
But we know from God’s word we still need transformation… to be changed into His image!
Second - comes the process of transformation
This process needs the rebirth as precondition just we need to be able to live by the Spirit to draw close to God. The cleansing alone isn’t sufficient, we need the ability to see, hear and feel in the spiritual realm because we have to draw close to God.
In 2.Cor. 3:18 we read that the veil is torn and we have free access to the Holy of Holies - to the very presence of God - and being exposed to His holiness we get changed into His glory.
God is Spirit and drawing close to Him… is just possible by being in the Spirit, too. Jesus told it so (Jo. 4:24)
If drawing close into His holy presence we will find out now our “old” mistakes standing before us again. But not to confess them again - they’re forgiven… and God doesn’t remind them anymore.
Now it’s about the cause! What caused us to act and speak in a certain way? Which “root” triggers in us actions we later regret?
God uses our past – and long forgiven - mistakes to make it easier for us to get His lessons here.
His focus this time isn’t on salvation… His focus is on a revolutionary transformation. He wants to expose and uproot the deep hidden causes making us tick the way we are.
He is about radical change… change never possible by man. He wants to remold us so completely we’ll become a different person… though still looking the same from the outside.
So instead of being puzzled, confused and
even depressed it is actually a good reason to praise the Lord! Giving Him
thanks for doing His work of transformation in us!
I can’t tell you what a relief it is for a believer starting to see this clearly. Giving God praise for the situation is a mighty weapon blowing depression and confusion apart!
Praising the Lord for His work - and
asking Him to continue it - is such a mighty breakthrough – satan and hell
is trembling with fear.
They know just too well: If God starts His work on us this is serious matter! So their last resort is to keep us in the dark about the fact it is God… and making us believe it is their work (accusing us of long forgiven faults) and by this causing us to refuse or obstruct the work of God’s Spirit in us.
They know the work God is doing here is very easy actually. Nothing we have to do at all.
It is just for us to accept His God’s work
in us… and He will work out the changes.
Do you see now why knowing about this work is so important? It’s the process God needs to do in us to “de-coin” us, the process of transformation into His image! Life truly – a new creation of God!
The old will be gone… once for all! We even won’t remember it anymore! It’s so as we have never been different at all… a complete, total new creation!
When the Lord told me to write about His work of “re-coining”/transforming us I asked Him to assist me by pouring His anointing on me and helping me with the right examples making understanding more easy and plain.
So moving this before Him suddenly a dear sister came to my mind… and I knew God would give me a fresh and first hand example of His wondrous work of transformation. So get ready to see our God in action!
I love intelligent people and this sister is one of them - such a smart woman with her heart on the right spot.
When she gave her life to the Lord you
could see the changes and she got a burning heart for Jesus having an
intimate relationship with the Lord. Living interaction: She talked with
Him... and He talked with her.
It was the joy of my heart to listen to all she got from the Lord when we met or talked on the phone.
One day she told me about a problem she had in her life causing her much frustration. She had prayed about it for a long time… but no change at all!
She knew it wasn’t good… and no, she didn’t take it lightly! She took a clear stand against it never accepting it. She asked the Lord to take it from her… but nothing happened.
Wasn’t God hearing her? Perhaps she was
doing something wrong here… something she didn’t know about… and so she was
Being a child her parents divorced and this was a traumatizing situation she couldn’t escape as a child.
She had no other chance but getting “coined” by this experience tormenting her innocent little heart working out changes in her soul life… changes she had no clue about they existed in her soul.
Many years later she fell in love with her husband and they married… and some years later she became a wonderful woman of God.
She had suffered from her “problem” before – it started short after her marriage - but didn’t talk about it because she thought it wasn’t so important with her mind.
Now after God’s Spirit dwelling in her this attitude changed: His Spirit didn’t accept it any longer!
What was the problem?
Though she had a good marriage she was haunted by very strong thoughts and fears her loving husband would leave her one day as her father left her mother.
With her mind – she has a bright and
self-reflective mind – she pushed it aside saying: “This is absolute
There is not a grain of truth with those
fears! My husband loves me dearly… and never there is a smoke of thought in
him he might ever leave me… he is mad after me!
So why are those crazy feelings in me?”
She was angry at herself… but all mental ability and all contradicting reality didn’t stop those deep sensations in her.
She was resisting those thoughts in Jesus’ name because she felt how they were poisoning the relationship between them.
Her husband’s job was forcing him to
return home irregular just he had to drive to different cities doing
construction work with automatic doors and maintaining them. He often came
home late… or had to sleep in hotels when being in cities far away… always
fertile ground for those tormenting fears.
Though she was resisting with her mind she couldn’t hinder the reality of her fears shining through her eyes and the way she was approaching him when he finally came home.
Do you see the crippling impact a
“coining” has on a life? Do you see how this “coining” is able to ruin a
wonderful relationship though there is no obvious evidence… no real cause it
has to be destroyed at all?
Do you see how those fears could lead to unjustified questions and actions… pressing a loving husband into a corner he doesn’t deserve to be in?
Can you imagine what will happen in his heart if he will find out about his wife’s fears one day after wondering why she is so “strange”… hurting his genuine and true love towards her… and this absolutely unnecessarily?
As I said she is a highly intelligent person with the ability of self-critical thinking… and she clearly knew: He doesn’t deserve this! I’m wrong here… and my wrong has the potential destroying our marriage: I don’t want this! I love him… and he loves me!
However this true assessment put her under
even more stress. She didn’t want her marriage to be threatened by those
Clearly it was standing before her… but though she begged the Lord to free her… though she rebuked those feelings in Jesus’ name… they still were there haunting her nearby every day.
No, there was no hidden sin hindering God to help her… there was just the brutal impact of her parents’ divorce “coining” her… and she had no clue about this till she married herself.
When she told me about this on the phone that day I didn’t need to bind satan in the name of Jesus to set her free.
I just had to tell her she should stop fighting against it and accepting it as fact in her life. I told her it’s not her worry to get this out of her life… just she doesn’t belong to herself anymore.
All she is and has - since the day Jesus
became Lord of her life - is owned by Him now! Yes, EVERYTHING!
So it’s His task and not hers to remove all He doesn’t like in her. I told her that God’s word is valid and true not just about the “goodies” God promises but due to the fact we’re the apple of His eye everything… though we might look at it as bad by our sight… has to serve our best. It can’t be different!
So why not praising God’s goodness about her fears? Why not praising His perfect plan about her life coming to pass anyway?
Why not turning her eyes away from what she sees in the natural realm and look on it with the eyes of faith trusting a loving heavenly Father caring for all she has need of?
Why caring about “our” changes when His word says He is the husbandman cleansing the branches?
There was some silence after I told her this… never such an idea had come to her mind before. She had hoped I would show her a way how to get rid of this bondage… all her thoughts spinning around her deep desire to break free from finally.
Like Naaman she was puzzled I didn’t show the reaction she’d expected - praying with her, breaking the bondage in Jesus’ name etc.
But she is a smart one… and her heart is on the right place. After a while she said:
“Actually you’re right; Markus! This is the only logical thing to do when taking God’s word serious… but how in the world did you get this idea??? No one I know would ever come to this conclusion! They rather would start a prayer chain and fasting praying for freedom… but to give God praise for this…..??? Oh, man!”… she was laughing at this point.
So we prayed at the phone together… and never talked about it again.
Today moving my writing before the Lord a
thought rushed my mind:
“Why not calling her and asking about how this turned out in the end? This would be a good, first hand and fresh example proving God’s truth here!”
So I called her right before I started writing… and so it went on:
I told her I needed her help for writing about God’s principles displaying fundamental truths as clear as possible.
Joyfully she agreed to help me… wondering what will come now.
More than 14 years had passed. So I asked her if she remembers her deep problem years ago and the talk we had on the phone.
“Ouff! Oh, man, waaaiiit! I hardly can remember… was there really such a feeling in me? Yes, yes, thinking about it… yes, you’re right! Have I really felt that way??? I can’t relate to this anymore… this is so far away… is looking so “not me”!
Markus, believe me I have quite some difficulties here. I remember now… but this isn’t there in me anymore! I can’t understand how I ever could have felt that way… no relation in me anymore… not at all!”
I was laughing: “Praise God! If you know what a perfect and authentic testimony you are with your words here! You’re the poof of God’s perfect work of transformation, right today! He renewed you so completely and did this so perfectly you are so as if never have been marred by this nightmare!”
Now she was getting the whole thing shouting:
“Man, Markus! I never thought of this… yes, you’re so right! See, I even forgot to give Him thanks for this miracle in me… just it never came back into my mind!
I became so perfectly renewed I even didn’t realize the work of renewal… and so there was no reason for me to even say ‘thank-you’ - just it disappeared so perfectly!
Thank you so much for “using” me and calling me today! I will give Him the praise He deserves now… and I pray for His anointing on you for your assignment you have to do! Oh, what a wonderful God we have! He made me new… completely!”
After this quite some more “giants” of her past came back to her mind… giants God had disintegrated into non-existence… and of course she had forgotten to give Him thanks for this, too :-)!
So you see: Writing this to you made a dear sister quite happy today :-)!
I could give more examples – both positive and negative.
A brother was unnecessarily suffering for more than 10 years just he didn’t trust in God’s work but trying to change himself instead. Like a Tibetan prayer-mill I was repeating the same simple truths. Just a couple months ago he had his breakthrough as he started to trust the Lord more than his understanding.
A fresh married couple both heavily “coined” and cursed by their past in sin capable destroying their marriage in future grabbed God’s chance right in the moment… activating His power casting out depression, braking deep curses and bondages laying on both of them.
Yes, when God does His work of transformation we don’t take notice of it!
When we get “coined” we get coined by outside occurrences having their impact on us. Often these are traumatizing incidents leaving us permanently malformed in our souls… without any chance to break free from by human means.
We get “coined” from the outside in. This is a violent and painful process leaving us permanently “transformed” in a negative way.
When God does His root-work of “de-coining” the memories coming up will bring the lived through pain to life again… and the instinctive reaction of every normal man is shrinking back from such a thing. We look for soul-peace and so avoid living through such night-mares again.
We do not know it’s God, so we tend to block His work here… instead embracing it. And giving Him the praise is the last thing coming to our minds, right?
We do not know it’s just enough…
1. to accept the past, taking it before Him in prayer
2. reaffirming we’re His possession – willfully committing this “coining” to Him
3. and leaving the accomplishment with Him – forgetting about it
All the time our loving Father is just one step away of finishing in us the most marvelous work we ever can imagine - but we don’t get it!
We concentrate on the rising “problem” all
our thoughts circling around how to have this eliminated quickly. We’re even
so over-focused on getting relief here… we don’t see the relief… a perfect
“de-coining” is standing right before us!
Instead we try to fight the problem with our means… instead of doing the much easier thing: Turning to the husbandman saying:
“Thank you, Lord, for Your perfect work in me! Here You have all I had to live through in my past… here You have my emotions and here is this deep hurting and wound making me feel so miserable right now! Here is it, my Father! Thank You for bringing it up again! I’m Yours… Your very possession and trust Your love towards me. Here it is! Take it out and fill this area in me with Your Holy Spirit!”
.. and then: Just forget about it!!!
God “re-coins” us from the inside out! This process is different from the processes “coining” us. This is no violent procedure at all!
The only painful thing coming with it: We have to allow Him living through the painful memories again to expose the deep roots to the light. We have to dare trusting His work in us… daring to act against our natural reflexes and embracing those memories.
Very important! When we had no chance escaping the painful process of “coining” … we can block the blessed process of “re-coining” by refusing God’s work in us to go further.
God never is forcing Himself on us!
He is gentle… and He wants us to trust His work… trusting Him more than all
we’re able to comprehend being in such an emotional situation that moment.
It’s just all about accepting it… passing it over to Him… and the most wonderful work will start in our life. So wonderful we have no idea about what He will do!
Especially difficult is it when our negative “coining” is connected with personal guilt. If it’s painful to feel the impact of suffered mischief again… it’s much more when own guilt is involved.
Oh, how much we desire to forget about it… no hard feelings… let time settle the dust on it. But now it’s rising before us again… very much alive… highly uncomfortable, indeed. Our pride starts twisting and turning in all directions… is there some loophole to jump through?
Yes, it’s just old fellow pride… this deep root… our God is after!
Though the pain is stronger the cure is the same as written before.
Is it complicated? No, it’s so easy…
the only complication here is our limited understanding we have about God’s
dealings in our lives!
For a normal human being to be able to accomplish something we need to concentrate on our plans. We have to keep it in our focus to see it becoming reality.
As more we want something as more we’re concentrating… narrowing our focus on our wishes and aims (tunnel vision/hyper focusing) - absolutely normal human behavior.
And in this way we have a tendency to handle spiritual problems, too. Is there a problem we want to get rid of it and our thoughts and focus is concentrating on the problem.
We want to please the Lord… and so we look on ourselves just to find out: I miss it on every level!
Adding to this we start to compare us with others and so the misery develops from bad to worse.
The stress level is rising and our soul
grabs for the reigns of our lives… leaving our spiritual man inactivated in
It never comes into our minds we’re worried about something God never wants us to be worried about at all!
Yes, you read right! God never said you should be worried about your transformation!
This is His work alone! He is the husbandman who will cleanse every branch… no, it’s not your job! Your job is just to abide in Jesus!
You don’t believe me? Okay, let’s read:
I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.
He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.
You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.
Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. – Jo. 15:1-6
Do you get it? Where does He say you have to worry about your fruit? Where does He say… you have to care about the changes to please Him more?
Just one thing is required – one thing God
wants from you: Remaining in Jesus!
Staying in his presence - that’s all you need to do! There is no more perfect way for you to find but this one thing: To abide in Jesus! Staying in His presence! Sitting at His feet… trusting Him relentlessly… in spite of all your senses will show you as “reality”.
I know it sounds strange but…
If Jesus is sleeping on a pillow in your
boat (life) amidst raging waves… the best thing for you to do is grabbing
the next pillow and taking a nap beside Him :-)!
There is just one reality for us and this is the reality with your God!
He has chosen you from the foundation of this earth! (Eph. 1:4) All your days were written in His book before you’d been made in your mother’s womb! (Ps. 139:16)
So why all your sorrows and worries? You
don’t need to have them! There is absolutely no reason having any of them!
You see your life developing opposite to what you have dreamed? Doesn’t matter at all!
Your life is in His hands, right… and He never makes a mistake… never fails, right?
Everything happening in your life is purposefully arranged… and has no other intent but to serve your very best. Right, EVERYTHING! (Ro. 8:28)
Therefore we read in God’s word:
Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Eph. 5:20
Yes, I know very well what I write here
never comes into a human mind when being in trouble… but where in God’s word
do we find that our normal motions are the basis of our life in the Spirit?
Where did Jesus say to be worried? Didn’t He say just the opposite pointing to the sparrows and lilies? (Matt. 6:25-34)
We’re called to be overcomers… so what is “overcoming” about when all our actions show no difference from normal human behavior?
In the very moment you’ll start acting by the Spirit… the transforming power of God will be activated transforming you from the inside out!
You won’t feel His work at all… no
sensation… no trumpet sound… no email: mission accomplished… but a perfect
work… a new creation as a living fact… visible… for all to see!
In His Service