I don’t know how many of you are familiar with the show on MTV called “Made”, but it is a self-improvement reality show that follows teens who have a goal to be “made” into something; like a singer, dancer, cheerleader, etc. They get a coach that is an expert in the field of their goal, and over several weeks MTV tracks the progress of the teens and the results are aired in a one- hour show. Wouldn’t it be great if we could be made into the likeness of Christ by the same process of that show? We get a “Christianity coach” to hang out with us for a few weeks and at the end we are complete with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. We reveal our new selves to everyone around us and go about our merry lives.
Unfortunately, that is not how the process of developing character works. God is more interested in our character than our comfort, so sometimes that development is an uncomfortable or even downright painful experience. “…we rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character, and character, hope.” (Romans 5:3,4) I’m sure the show “Made” has plenty of eager candidates, but I don’t really know too many people that are eager to sign up for suffering. The thing about God is that He chooses us; He is the potter and we are the clay and He will shape us the way that seems best to Him. We can either be pliable or resist.
Everyone who who wants to mature in their relationship with Christ and develop the wonderful character qualities that He displayed when He walked this earth, must go through this molding process during times in their lives. If you aren’t willing to go through it, you will definitely grow older, but you will not mature and the will of God is for all of us to grow and mature and be continually perfecting ourselves. It doesn’t happen overnight, or in several weeks, but over a lifetime; an ever present goal for us to reach for.
“….when troubles come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy.
For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.
So let it grow, for when your endurance if fully developed, you will be perfect and complete needing nothing.” (James 2-4)
Happy New Year!