At the beginning of this year, I sensed the Lord leading me to make a significant change in my daily schedule. To go from being someone who woke up and began her day at about 7:00 or 7:30 am to becoming someone who would rise before sunrise. For many, this may not sound like a big deal but I have always been more of a night owl than an early bird. Whenever I would have to get up before the sun would rise I would inwardly grumble feeling robbed of sleep. The script that would play in my mind would often go something like this, “you are not a morning person. You don’t do well when you have to get up before sunrise. You are not going to have an energetic day.” But this year the Lord wanted to flip this script.
Though there were a number of beneficial reasons for why the Lord was asking me to go through this transformation the greatest reason of all was simply to show me that I could. And that the same way this was possible is the same way anything is possible!
In Romans 12:2 it says,
“do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…”
According to this passage being transformed is not only a command but a promise!
The word transformed is the Greek word metamorphoō and it means-
It is a word that actually implies we can go from one reality to another. As many of you know it is the word, we use to describe what happens when a caterpillar transforms into a beautiful butterfly. From crawling on its belly and inching its way across the earth to breaking free from its earthbound life, sprouting wings, and flying unshackled and untethered from gravity. It is a beautiful illustration of the power of transformation. The incredible possibility of changing our reality!
However, it is vital to note that transformation happens “by the renewing of your mind.” For me to be transformed into a morning person required changing the way I thought. I had to make a decision that I was no longer going to play the old script but rather adopt a new one. Instead of saying, “I am not a morning person.” I would say aloud to myself “I enjoy rising before the sun to begin my day.” Instead of saying, “You don’t do well when you have to get up before the sun rises.” I would say aloud to myself, “Today is going to be a great day because you were able to rise before the sun came up!” Before I felt it, I said it!
Within two weeks I was not only saying it, but I felt it! I began to look forward to rising before the sun came up and I had the energy to go with it! My reality went through a metamorphosis and became something new. Several months have now passed and rising before the sun comes up is a new normal for me. Though there are times when I have been tempted to revert to the old way of thinking I am now equipped to recognize it and take the thought captive quickly before it pulls me backward.
I share this because often we are tethered to old patterns of thinking that impose limitations that God has not placed on us. Every good and wonderful thing that God intends for your life can only be apprehended by first renewing your mind. Your better self is on the other side of a metamorphosis. Without question, this is an ongoing process. A life-long journey of discovering the full potential of the treasure contained in these earthen vessels.
My prayer is that today you will look to the Lord and ask Him where you need to adopt a new way of thinking and then commit to the process of transformation. A new set of wings await you!
As I walked into the cardio room at the gym this morning, I was greeted with the overwhelming stench of someone’s sweat! I realize it is a cardio room and people do go there to sweat, but the room is equipped with an enormous air filtering system that usually keeps the odor at a minimum. But not today! As I climbed on my machine, I was able to quickly identify the culprit- a man probably in his mid-fifties, sweating from head to toe and stinking to high heaven. The smell was so pungent and putrid I couldn’t concentrate on anything else. I was consumed with wanting him to go and take his stinky sweat with him. I know it sounds petty, but I actually prayed for him to leave. It took everything in me to resist gagging from the smell. Thankfully to my great relief he made his move within a few minutes after my arrival exiting the cardio room. However, it took an additional fifteen minutes before the smell finally cleared and I am pretty sure there were a few people who walked in afterward looking my direction and thinking I was the culprit.
Now there are many who come into that room, work out hard, and get soaked in their own sweat, but it is rare that their smell becomes that offensive and overwhelming. What was different about this guy? Though I can’t be certain my guess is that he probably came in carrying a stench from the previous day. Old sweat is much fouler than new sweat. Maybe he worked hard the day before and decided to wait for a shower until after his morning workout. Bad idea! An in-between shower could have made a world of difference.
I happened to be reading through Matthew 10 while all this was transpiring, and it made me think twice about Jesus’ words in verse 4.
“ And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet.”
Though I understand the significance of “shaking the dust from your feet” as an open warning, I also think it carries an even greater significance for our own sake and the sake of those to whom we are called to serve in the future.
If I allow the dust from a bad experience today to settle on me and travel with me into tomorrow, it can potentially taint my future ministry to others with the stench of yesterday.
I’ve discovered that when I carry the dirt of an offense, disappointment, frustration, or wound from yesterday into today, it has the power to spoil and corrupt the present work of Christ through me. I wind up believing for less and complaining more. Instead of the sweet fragrance of Christ, there’s the foul smell of flesh.
So what is the remedy? A good spiritual bath-DAILY!
Come into the presence of God with all the garbage of your day, so He can wash you clean with His living water. Don’t allow your wounds and disappointments to fester but instead choose to let His love cleanse, heal, and restore you. Take time to pour out your heart before Him then allow Him to pour out the water of His word over you. If you need to shed some tears, then shed some tears but then allow him to dust off your feet so you can walk into tomorrow smelling fresh and clean.
As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, “Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 3 Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away. Acts 13:2-3
Have you ever wished the Holy Spirit would “tell” somebody of “importance” about the special purpose God has for you?
Honestly, I must confess I spent many years longing for the Lord to “tell” somebody, in a position of “authority,” that He had indeed set me apart for a unique work to which He had called me. In fact, I asked (at times even begged) the Lord to have a leader lay hands on me, and prophecy over me, to confirm His calling on my life. Believing that if I could just have that kind of confirmation, I would then gain the necessary confidence and courage to fulfill the calling. Though I think this kind of affirmation can be helpful and maybe if I were a man it would have been more likely, the truth is I already possessed all the confirmation I needed. God had already written His desires on my heart. Whether or not I had the approval of men I already had God’s stamp of approval on my heart. It was my own insecurities that had kept me blind to what was right in front of me.
I think it’s noteworthy that when God called Joseph through a dream found in Genesis chapter thirty-seven nobody confirmed or affirmed it. Nobody “called out Joseph’s destiny,” but God. Nobody laid hands on him and declared that he had indeed been set apart for a unique and special purpose. Nobody commissioned him and sent him forth. Though we might argue that they should have, the fact remains nobody did! God alone revealed Joseph’s destiny through a dream and Joseph decided to trust God making the most of his opportunities. Ultimately the proof was in the pudding. God’s choosing became evident through the fruitfulness of Joseph’s life.
A word of prophecy or the approval of a respected leader can be a tremendous blessing and help, but they are not necessary! The only person God needs on board to fulfill your destiny is you. And the only person you need to fulfill God’s plan for your life is God. Many of us will never get a unique word of prophecy or the seal of approval from a respected leader. Rather than allowing it to hinder or discourage us we can choose to let our roots grow deep into the soil of God’s affirming love. That soil will provide all the nutrients you and I need to become all that God intends!
PS. My desire is to help draw out and affirm God’s destiny for His daughters. I would love to know what assignments God has written on your heart so I can believe with you and for you. Also “You are a Woman of Destiny” was written to help women find and fulfill their special assignments from God.