Luke turned four last week. How time flies. Luke was very excited about what would happen overnight when he transformed from a three year-old to a four year-old. He thought that we might not even recognize him the next morning. He would be completely different, he thought, both physically and in behavior. He said that when he turned four that he would not do three year-old things anymore such as whining and crying. He was totally convinced that the transition to a four year-old person would cause all inclinations of past childhood behaviors to be eliminated and that he would only act from then on in mature, four year-old ways of life. Well, the next day came and guess what? He cried some and he even whined a little bit…or a lot.
Luke was four years-old but he still acted like the three year-old that we knew from the day before. I remember when I thought dramatic change would happen in me when I became a Christian. I thought that I might not even be recognized after I came out of the waters of baptism. I don’t mean that I thought it would change me physically but I did think that receiving the Holy Spirit in baptism would change me in overwhelming ways. He did but just not as fast as I thought. I thought that I would instantaneously stop being selfish and cease fighting with my siblings. Well I was baptized and guess what happened the next day? I was selfish and I fought with my siblings. I learned that day that life change takes time.
I didn’t change overnight just because I decided to follow Jesus just like a toddler doesn’t change dramatically just because he has a birthday. It took time to see how the Lord has worked in my life to change me and to make me more like Jesus. I can tell Luke has grown when I look at pictures of him when he was a baby. I can tell I have grown when I remember how I used to be and see how the Lord has changed my heart, thinking, and behavior. Praise the Lord for his Spirit that works in us so we “become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.” (Eph. 4:13)