” . . . transform . . . “

“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.” (Romans 12:2)

Okay, I confess, my photos are not always pretty.  I was walking across one of the upper levels of a parking garage this week and noticed this triple shower head spewing some sort of black ooze onto the streets below.  Well, not actually, but it sort of reminded me of that.  In fact, I had an unusual view of a power transformer set-up.  I was above it looking down instead of below looking up.  This collection of wires, insulators, and transformers form an amazing collection that take moving electrons from transmission lines and make them available to make my fruit smoothies.  Wow!

The different perspective on the set-up intrigued me for some reason, so I had to stop and take some photos.  Then it got me to wondering . . .

Transform and transformation are popular words in our world today.  Libraries, bookstores, and online sites abound with books suggesting pathways for transforming our bodies, minds, and spirits.  Many of them suggest that transformation is a matter of willpower, the right regime, and time.  I guess some transformation works just that way.  I can go to the gym, work on the equipment, and with time transform my body into a lean machine.  I guess I would call that sort of transformation a transformation from within.

I think there are other forms of transformation that happen from without, by external forces working on an individual or group.  Hate is a powerful transformer.  One of the scariest things I’ve ever experienced has been listening to children mouth slurs against leaders, groups, etc. The children have no idea what they are really saying, but they’ve already been transformed by hateful rhetoric spewed by adults around them.  Other forces can also transform us.  Various forms of abuse can transform us from trusting to non-trusting people.  Tragedy can transform us from hopeful to despairing.  I am one who believes the most powerful transforming force is love, specifically, God’s love, in all the many forms in which it is shared with and through us.

One of the most dangerous and potentially life-threatening situations I’ve encountered has been times where individuals in crisis need transformation, but sabotage the process by insisting they can do it all from within and without the help of any other.  They insist they know what’s best for them. They insist that they are the exception and don’t need the transforming influences that others have allowed to help them move to the kind of life-saving transformation they truly need.  They fail to recognize that the most important step in the most important transformations is the recognition that we first need God’s love and the love of others to transform our minds and spirits.  We need God’s love to transform us from hate to love, from non-trusting to trusting, from empty to full, from unfulfilled to purposeful living.  Through that transformation we can make the other changes necessary in our lives.  Without that first step, we doom ourselves to flounder.

I pray that God will continue to transform me by the power of divine love, so that I might share that transforming love with others.  How about you?

Blessings and Peace,


Pastor, Cross Lanes United Methodist Church

Cross Lanes, West Virginia

Help save lives! For more information on my book, “A Relentless Hope: Surviving the Storm of Teen Depression,” visit

My other book, “Wednesday Wonderings: Spiritual Journaling Through a Lens” is available at and

Check out my video, “Teens Surviving the Storm”


~ by revgenelson on September 23, 2015.

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