The NEW man we are becoming is expertly formed one surgery at a time through the removal (via confession and repentance) of lies and the installation of truth.
Truth gets internalized as we experience it and understand that it is indeed true.
In my own life, I exchanged the message that “the Father isn’t good” for the heart-renewing truth that “he is in charge of my life, and I get to participate.” This has come to me one surgery at a time—one training, one validation ceremony, one initiating moment after another. How radically can the Father’s surgeries refashion a man?
Let’s go back to Peter. Compare the Peter of the Gospels with the Peter who wrote these words:
Be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you. Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up. You’re not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It’s the same with Christians all over the world. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ—eternal and glorious plans they are— will have you put together and on your feet for good. 1 Peter 5:6–10 MSG
That doesn’t sound like the Peter who was quick to spout off whatever was on his mind. The Peter who, if he didn’t have a sword, would grab someone else’s. The Peter who, instead of simply listening, always felt compelled to tell the Son of God, “Jesus, I have a better idea.” What happened to that Peter as he moved from his late twenties to his late fifties?
He encountered Jesus.
He followed him. And after Jesus left he continued to walk with God and got Fathered, and he lived to tell about it in his two letters to the churches.
What does it look like for a man to come out of his woundedness, turn, and be healed? Look at Peter. Peter’s healing and growth came at a price. It was surgery on top of surgery, healing after healing, training and more training. It was the old man giving way to more and more of the NEW man. The Truth? We ARE becoming.
But exactly what is it we are becoming?
Increasingly we are growing into more and more: we are becoming the Beloved Sons of a true Father. He loves us unconditionally. If we’ll be open to it, we can experience his love. And when we experience it, everything changes.
In your time alone with God:
What would it look like to take God up on the offer of remaking, remodeling and restoring you?
Where would he start?
Would you be excited at the proposition?
If Peter, why not you?