By Ayannah McIlwain
What once was your all-consuming- yet-never satisfying way of living is no longer a part of your identity. You’ve let go of old sinful ways and have allowed Christ to step in and clean you from the inside out. He has rehabilitated the heart, rejuvenated the mind and healed the soul. You no longer think the same or behave in the same manner. Christ is rooted deep within you, and you carry the fruit of the spirit well. You are a new creature, and you will not apologize for what God has made you to be…...
There was once a point in my life where I was hesitant to show what God was changing in me. I didn’t want others to see my growth and then be able to use it against me. “Oh you go to church now?” “How come you never want to go out anymore?” “ I heard you stopped being friends with them, what happened??” I use to answer these questions with a passive response to be as non-confrontational as possible. The people in my life were familiar with me being a certain way, and I felt sorry for no longer having the desire to keep up old tendencies. I didn’t want to explain what was shifting within me because I was uncomfortable with the idea of being vulnerable. Possessing vulnerability meant that anyone could see my inconsistencies and flaws and then judge me on them. I think this goes for a lot of us. It’s easier to cover up and turn away from others than explain what God is cleaning up on the inside and how it’s affecting our growth.
The problem is that when you spare others' feelings regarding your spiritual walk you’re expressing unappreciation towards God and his workmanship. We must never value people’s opinions over the Lord’s. He did the work in you. He saw you as worthy enough to save. He gave you strength and restored your peace of mind, not anyone else. Why wouldn’t you want to rejoice and share your story?
Allowing yourself to be vulnerable enough for others to see is a form of testimony. It may give others the possibility to judge, but it can also be a way to show your strength and resilience. When the transformation is covered up, you are robbing others of the chance of seeing God within you.
I have now reached a point in my life where I refuse to apologize or hide my new habits. In fact, I show them off proudly. “No, I don’t do that anymore. No, I don’t go to those places anymore. No, I am no longer friends with them, and I won’t apologize for it either.” Oftentimes people see your growth and immediately say you’ve changed! That’s right! I have changed and I am proud of it! I am unapologetically new!
Isaiah 43: 18-19 “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I am doing a new thing”
There is nothing wrong with change, in fact the Lord encourages it! He wants us to be new and to let go of old ways that hinder our spiritual growth. The key however is that we must walk with confidence into our new life. Once we start unapologetically appreciating what God has done, others will have to respect it.
He said he would give you beauty for ashes, and that’s exactly what he did. You are beautiful and new! You are not the same person you once were. You aren’t a slave to the sin that once had you bound. You are a new creature! Now walk in it! Walk in your power. Be unapologetically vulnerable and let your story be shown for everyone to see.
Ayannah Kamryn is a native to the Philadelphia area and a recent graduate from Cabrini University. She is an avid traveler and adventure enthusiast. As an inspiring motivational speaker, she enjoys encouraging others to live their lives abundantly through the loving power of Christ. Ayannah has recently begun her career in freelance blogging specializing in lifestyle inspirational creative writing. You can find more written work on her portfolio page https://www.agapefilesblog.com/ . Follow and connect with her on Instagram @ayannahkam .