Richards, Nancy

Transform: To change or alter completely in nature, form or function.

I have been transformed by the Holy Spirit in my natural character and outward abilities, continually gaining confidence in my faith towards HIM. God has led me through a spiritual formation process that has transformed the very nature of my posture, skills, and deliverance of my God-given gifts and talents.

My life today–both the richness of its pleasures and the trials of its sufferings–is a result of a renovating work of God. It has been a long journey of faith, obedience, and offering myself to Him as a living sacrifice. Along the way, my earnest prayer has been that He would teach me to love and serve Him, as well as others He’s placed in my life.

As I reflect on my journey, I have come to recognize one especially important vessel of my transformation: my very sick child, my daughter. As I did my best to care for her, the Lord taught me to pursue Him as Lord of my life. In both the love of the marvelous saints around us, and in the perseverance,  I witnessed in my daughter, I have seen God’s handiwork.

Through my daughter’s life and death, I learned endurance.
I learned passion to carry on.
I learned that in the midst of our struggles, I could still experience the embracing and uplifting glory of God.

During those dark months, He led me on a deep search for Him.
Like any parent, I was broken by the suffering of my child. In those moments of sharp pain,
I cried out to God.

Why all the suffering?
Why four months of enduring pain and conflict?
Why not take her in the beginning?
Or why not heal her and let her live?

And why–when my spirit was wrestling with doubt and hurt–why open heaven and let me experience His uncontainable, undeniable glory? Having tasted of its wonder, my deepest plea is to behold more of His glory.

I held nothing back from Him, offering myself as a living sacrifice.
In that process, He loosed my spirit of a deep tormenting fear, which I later learned was rooted in early childhood sexual abuse.

But He didn’t stop there. He addressed my heart issues of self-condemnation, a martyr spirit, and devalued sense of worth. In Christ, it is done. I prayed that through my testimony, those around me would see and taste that He is good.

Romans 12:2 encourages, “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God” (NKJV ).

Yes, He renewed my mind from insecurities and rejections. I was delivered (miraculously  healed), but I was angry.

God wasn’t scared away by my hurt. He pursued me with a gentle voice, and loving, outstretched hand. I envisioned God’s comforting words: “Well, you’ve come this far. Now why don’t you walk with me for a little while longer, so I can show you who I created you to be?” Of course, I could not deny such a loving request but somewhat reluctantly, even remorsefully, I said yes.

II Corinthians 3:18 promises, “But we all, with unveiled faces, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord” (NKJV).

Today, I still am being transformed. Through learning to live with a disability, through the loss of my husband, and under the cocoon of three colleges/universities, I’ve come to find out who I am. He’s teaching me what my callings are and how to use my gifts.

As He and I continue to walk together, I often wonder how His transforming power will next be manifested in my life. As I grow in faith, obedience, perseverance, hope and confidence, I believe He will transform me into His image.

From glory to glory,
By the Spirit of the Lord!

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Brown, Brie

Brown, Brie

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