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  • Writer's pictureKandi Swift

You've Changed!

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17, ESV

Have you ever watched the scene of a movie in which two people were arguing or disagreeing about something and one of them shouted out, “You’ve changed!”? Maybe someone has made that statement to you at some point in your life. It’s usually spoken in a negative tone when a person isn’t happy about the other party’s reaction or response to something, or their expectation of them to go along with a particular behavior. They become upset because the other person isn’t reacting in the way they anticipated. It was an expectation because that’s the manner in which they always responded in the past. All of a sudden their pattern or normal way of acting changed and it’s upsetting for the person who realizes the two are no longer on the same page.


On the other hand, someone else can come along and make that very same statement and it means something completely the opposite. They’re thrilled because they didn’t receive the expected behavior. What’s interesting is, it can all be over the same thing! Let me give you an example. Let’s say I had an issue with substance abuse. I partied with my friends every weekend and the dealer loved me because he could always count on my money. I also had family and friends who prayed for the cycle of addiction to be broken over my life. After finally breaking free, I run into my old party friends that don’t find me fun anymore and a dealer that’s angry because I’m no longer contributing to his cash flow. Out of resentment, they yell, “You’ve changed!”. They’re infuriated and try to intimidate me with their disapproval. Several weeks later, I attend a holiday dinner and find myself surrounded by family and friends who love me. They see the positive change in my life and notice that I’m in my right mind, no longer strung out trying to steal, lie or cheat to get my next high. Out of joy and excitement they exclaim, “You’ve changed!”. They’re thrilled and begin to encourage and celebrate me.


I know that can be the reality for some, and an extreme example for many others that may not be able to relate. However, as believers in Christ, we all should be continually changing and becoming more Christ-like so, in that regard, we can all identify because we all have “stuff”. No matter what the offense might be, whether negative attitudes, constantly worrying about things, dishonesty, jealousy or impatience, when we make the choice to put those behaviors away, there is old “friend” that becomes angry and tries to get us to go back to our prior ways and act like him. Reverting to our old practices can sometimes feel like the easier thing to do, but we must resist the temptation to go back to those familiar places. Because while the enemy of our soul becomes angry at our transformation, the Lover of our soul is rejoicing and continues to strengthen us as we put our trust in Him. He gives us hope for our future and tells us that we can do all things through Him who gives us the strength. So, whether it’s the enemy or the Friend telling us that we’ve changed, let’s continue to change together and press toward the mark of the high call of Christ!

 

“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14


Prayer:

Heavenly Father, it is my desire to change for the better and to become more like You. Your word tells me that He who began a good work in me will be faithful to complete it. I surrender myself to Your work in my life each day.

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