Often we run into people who we knew from childhood. Sometimes people will make comments, about whether we have changed or not. At times, changes are frowned upon and people will comment negatively about some changes. We are expected to grow as human beings and while our personalities don’t change significantly, our character traits should change. The born again experience is one of trading the old with the new. “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).
Paul is a prime example of someone who went through a major transformation. He went from a persecutor of the church, to a devout missionary. A relationship with God and the salvation experience, is often a catalyst for major change. Other people can change significantly, based on life changing circumstances. These can relate to health related issues, a breakdown in a relationship or at times a change of environment. Either way, human behaviour change is inevitable and something to be embraced. We hope that people do not change negatively, as negative experiences can also leave some people bitter, for example.
This can leave people feeling cynical and jaded about life and other people. The caterpillar is often used as a symbol of change. This is due to the cycle of metamorphosis, which transforms it from a caterpillar into a butterfly. Similarly, humans adapt, grow and change with new experiences. Some people can seem to remain the same and often don’t grow or develop. It is sometimes difficult to continue to engage with people, who seem stuck in repetitive cycles. This especially when you are on a journey of growth and development.
Either way, my perspective is that we have to grow, in order for our lives to be meaningful. Christians are encouraged to grow in Christlike maturity. I think that many things that we ask God for, is dependent on our growth. We need to expand our capacity to receive from God. This is not to say that abundance equates to growth. What I am saying is that if you are serious about living for God, then continue to grow and be transformed into his image. As we continue to reflect the image of God, change will happen from the inside out. Eventually, our external realities will match up with the abundance that is happening internally.