Our transformation is not about our education or what we stop doing; it’s about discovery. It’s discovering who we already are in Christ through an ongoing cooperative process with the One who lives in us.
The problem we have with all of this is that God doesn’t usually answer our prayers for change the way we expected, or when we expected. My wife, Maureen, has a phrase for this process. She would say, “The Decorator is here!” Here’s how she puts it.
Say you hate your house. It’s old, outdated, and ugly! You want a complete overhaul. One day you meet a world renowned interior decorator and you beg him to come and redo your entire house. He agrees to renovate your home but he won’t be able to do it right away. You go on about your business for several weeks, anxiously awaiting the decorator, and wondering what’s taking so long for him to come. Then, one day, you come home to find that your place is all torn apart, people are stripping floors, peeling off wallpaper, tearing out cabinets and even knocking down walls. Would you get angry with them and tell them to stop? No, you would rejoice, shouting, the decorator is here! You would be excited that the long anticipated renovation had finally begun, knowing that they will be better than you could have ever hoped.
Likewise, when God answers your prayers and first comes to renovate you, it might not be how or when you expected Him to do it. Furthermore, He may have to tear down a few things. They may be things you were comfortable with, things you weren’t ready to get rid of. It all may look like a mess at first, even worse than before you started the process with God. But instead of getting angry at Him for making such a mess of your life, why not shout, “The Decorator is here!” And know that when He finishes the upgrade, it’s most glorious because He is building something beautiful.