“If you ever find yourself in the wrong story, leave.” ~Mo Willems
I stated in the previous writing (at the beginning of the new year) that there were two words heavily weighing on my heart the latter half of 2014. While I shared some thoughts on one of the words, I also dropped a hint to the second without pinpointing it clearly to you. I knew that when the Holy Spirit challenged me to consider the meaning of these two words for my life in 2014 as a guide for 2015 that I was being pushed towards a “new normal”. I have been taking time to really assess areas of my life where I have adapted myself to the story instead of saying to myself “this isn’t my story, time to leave”…
The word adapt in the manner that was ministered to me is a call to action in itself. While I have a powerful testimony to many things He’s empowered me to overcome, there are some areas in which I’ve adapted to my circumstance. That’s huge; while it is necessary at times to adapt to certain conditions, adaptation is customarily meant to be temporary. Adaptation is an altered state and is not designed for sojourning. We each have at least one experience in our lives that altered us, and some have in a sense deformed us… This isn’t God’s intent and plan when we go through challenges and difficulties. As I mentioned in my previous writing on “Adaptation”, we’re not designed to be “made to fit to” circumstances or to the assumptions of others; especially not to the limitations we place on ourselves. We are to allow the Holy Spirit to “make us fit for” overcoming every challenge. While some experiences have stunted our growth, it’s never too late to ask the Holy Spirit for help. He wants to nourish, nurture, and restore that area of underdevelopment so we can rise to the challenge and put it behind us. Believe it or not, until we overcome it, “it” is still there, deeply rooted, waiting for us ask Him for help to develop the strength, courage, and wisdom needed to deal with it…
Which leads to the second word: evolution. In Christ, we are empowered to move from the simplified state of consciousness of that dead spirit, into “lively stones”, demonstrating a heightened state of awareness that we are now living spirits with the regenerated mind in Christ. We are to reflect the consciousness of our Father, and Creator of all existence seen and unseen. We can no longer merely adapt to this world’s reality.
When I studied the words adaptation and evolution from a scientific perspective, I found that the gist of it is this: any condition that requires long periods of adaptation actually “weeds out” any species of any living thing that doesn’t have the ability to “evolve” in the midst of the transition to the “new normal” in which it will now exist. Which means, if it doesn’t evolve, it will inevitably become extinct. So anything that stops actively growing and evolving in the new norm, is in essence slowly dying. From a spiritual standpoint, the Holy Spirit I believe has relayed to me that evolving is the state of “transforming”, which Paul spoke of in Romans 12:2; I’ve shared several translations below:
Do not conform yourselves to the standards of this world, but let God transform you inwardly by a complete change of your mind. Then you will be able to know the will of God – what is good and is pleasing to him and is perfect. (GNT)
Don’t become like the people of this world. Instead, change the way you think. Then you will always be able to determine what God really wants–what is good, pleasing, and perfect. (GOD’S WORD translation)
Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you; develops well-formed maturity in you. (MSSG)
Let’s pause here…
Consider This: The Holy Spirit is ministering to me, and I pray He will minister to you also as a result of these writings, about the reality that any area of our life that remains in an unaltered, culturally-conformed state once we receive Christ, is subject to spiritual fossilization and extinction. That word, fossil, practically scared me right out of my skin. 🙂 So I looked it up: to be fossilized, from a psychological and/or spiritual perspective, is to be an antiquated or stubbornly unchanging person or thing… Areas that risk being fossilized, as He is relaying to me, end up as a mere imprint of what was; not fully reflecting what it could have been in its evolved state by the power of the Holy Spirit. I picture myself lost somewhere, in a part of my life that no longer functions and is no longer any benefit to myself, God, or anyone else… To allow ourselves to become some spiritually prehistoric, petrified, impression of someone from a time that has long past is NOT good, and completely unnecessary. We know full well this will not reflect the “better” God planned and intended for us when He redeemed us. We are all here, believers and nonbelievers alike, dealing with the same issues and struggles; yet those who have received Christ have the benefit of His Spirit… We are called out, chosen, and empowered to respond from the evolved state of an overcomer in Christ. We have a magnificent “Helper”, the Holy Spirit. Invite Him to challenge your thought processes, your reasoning; areas where life experience has caused you to adapt a mindset that does not reflect Christ. We don’t have to turn to stone in that place of pain, we can evolve; Christ brings transformation.