But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.John 1:12-13
Everywhere we look we see change. We see changes in seasons, green leaves giving way to a rainbow of fall colors. We see changes in politics, newly-elected officials replacing their counterparts every few years.
Some change is good. Some change not good enough. Some change not good at all. Life gives way to death.
One thing we cannot seem to change is ourselves. In our hearts, we are prideful and selfish people. Left on our own, we cannot even begin to fathom how to change from this sinful nature. We were born in this state.
As a leopard can’t change her spots, we cannot change from our sinful, selfish self. Not only do we treat others based on this God-awful nature; we even treat God as an absentee father. Yet we’re the ones who have estranged ourselves from Him. We have considered Him our enemy. We cannot do anything to fix this situation. When the incarnate God came to us, his own, we did not receive him (John 1:11).
We need someone from the outside of us, someone greater than us, to even begin this process. We need someone to complete this for us, to make this change in us.
That’s why God sent us Jesus. That’s why Jesus, in his life, death, and resurrection, has begun this change. True change, change that we can believe in, begins and is complete in Jesus.
Jesus changes us from sinners to saints. Jesus changes us from unbelief to belief in him. Jesus changes our hearts to receive him. As we receive him, believe in his name, he gives [us] the right to become children of God. We are born of God. This is the change the world longs and needs to see.
Prayer: Father, thank you for changing my heart to receive Jesus by faith. And thank you that through Jesus, you receive me as your child. Amen.
Contributed by Pastor Andrew Bartholomew