A simple internet search for the term “Extreme Makeover” will net you 4.3 million results. That is a lot of results! You will see everything from weight loss programs to make up videos. There was a program on ABC titled Extreme Makeover and was about plastic surgery. My favorite, however, was Extreme Makeover Home Edition which also aired on ABC. In this show, they provided home improvements or complete replacements of homes for less fortunate families. They would send the family on a paid 7day vacation, while volunteers remodeled their home. The best part was always the great reveal at the end. All the volunteers would gather around with the family, the home is obscured by a big bus, and everyone would be yelling “move that bus!” revealing the finished home.
I work in the cleaning industry, and at times customers expect us to give them an extreme makeover. We have walked into situations where the facility hasn’t been properly maintained, no wax protectant on the floors, stained and missing tiles, and they expect us to be able to make it look brand new with the use of our cleaning equipment. What they need is a restoration. We can not give them the Extreme Makeover that they are looking for. We run into this in everyday life as well, We can’t give ourselves or others an extreme makeover for their life, but God can and does.
In this podcast we are going to look at Four Extreme Makeovers – Be Changed Edition:
What do Extreme life makeovers look like?
First, we will look at Abram. Abram was changed by believing the promises of God. When Abram was 75 years old (Genesis 12:1-4) he was given seven distinct promises:
- Make of thee a great nation
- Bless Thee
- Make your name great
- Abram would be a blessing
- Those that would bless Abram would be blessed
- Those that would curse Abram would be cursed
- All families of the earth will be blessed by Abram
Abram was promised a son in (Genesis 15:1-6) Abram believed God and had righteousness imputed to him for his belief. After waiting for ten years for the fulfillment of the promise of a son, Sarah still hadn’t conceived; therefore she decided to give God a helping hand (Genesis 16:1-3). That sounds silly I know, but Christians are always trying to give God a helping hand, mostly because our time expectations don’t match up with the Lords. She gave Hagar to Abram to wife, and she conceived and had a son when Abram was 86 years old (Genesis 16:15-16), and Abram named him Ishmael.
Thirteen more years passed (Genesis 17:1-6) and the Lord came back to Abram when he was 99 years old and changed Abrams name to Abraham. He also reaffirmed that he did not need help to fulfill his promise and that the promised son was yet to come and would come through Sarah (Genesis 17:15-16). God declared that the promise would come through Isaac and not Ishmael. When Abraham was 100 years old, Sarah conceived and had a son, Issac. Abraham waited for 25 years for the promise to be fulfilled.
What are some current promises that we need to wait for?
In Philippians 4:19 we see that the Bible promises us that God will supply all of our needs. This verse does not say that he will supply all of our wants. We often get our wants and needs confused. Thinking that our wants are our needs, but that is not the case. It also does not say that our needs will be fulfilled immediately. We live in an immediate gratification society. We want what we want, and we want it now! This is evident from the success of fast food restaurants, and all the premade salad mixes at the grocery store. People used to go to the store and purchase all the ingredients and prepare their salads, but now we just go and grab a bag and dump it into a bowl. God never promised to give us our needs when we “think” we need them, but he will supply our needs when we truly need them.
Abraham had to wait for 25 years for the promise to be fulfilled, and some of the promises that he was given are still yet future.
Next, we will look at Jacob. Jacob was changed by spending time with God (Genesis 32:24-32). Jacob was leaving Laban and headed back home, to where he was sure his brother Esau was waiting to kill him. Right in the middle of this horrible situation, we see that Jacob received an Extreme Makeover.
How did Jacob spend time with God? To see how this came to pass, we first need to look back to Genesis 32:9-12. Here we see that as Jacob was preparing to spend time with God, he went to him in prayer. There are four things to take note of about this prayer.
- Jacobs personal approach to God
- Jacob trusted Gods Words
- Jacob confessed that he was unworthy
- Jacob asked for deliverance
Next, we see that Jacob wrestled with God. The Lord knows your thoughts (Proverbs 15:3); therefore if you are wrestling with understanding, you need to take it to the Lord. In Habakkuk 1:12-17 we see that Habakkuk did not understand why the Lord was doing things the way that he was, and he was honest with the Lord about his confusion, he wrestled with the Lord. But notice that he did it with the proper attitude, in Habakkuk 2:1 he states that although he didn’t understand, he would be where he was supposed to be and do what he was supposed to do, and wait for the Lord to reprove him, and show him how he was wrong. That is how we need to approach the Lord, Honestly, but with the correct attitude.
Jacob was never the same after his Extreme Makeover, his name was changed, and his walk was forever changed. Next, we will look at the Extreme Makeover that Saul received.
Saul was changed by submitting to the call of the Lord (Acts 13:1-9). Saul’s name was changed to Paul, we know him as the Apostle Paul. Paul demonstrated a complete change in life purpose. He started out with the “in” crowd (Acts 9:1-16), breathing out threats against the Church, he said in Galatians 1:13 that “beyond measure, I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it“. When giving his testimony in Acts 26:1-11 he admitted that he was contrary to Jesus, but he ended by serving the Lord (2 Corinthians 6:1-10). Paul was completely dedicated to the Cause of Christ. We see in 2 Corinthians 11:23-33 that he suffered greatly for the Lord. This list of sufferings that are mentioned are not just little hiccups in his life. Most people would not have survived what Paul suffered, but none of this suffering caused him to waiver.
How about you? Have you been changed? Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. (2 Corinthians 5:17). Have you had your name changed from sinner to Christian? Jesus came into the world to seek and to save that which is lost. Have you accepted the free gift of eternal life that he came to offer?
If so, there should be a noticeable change in your life. We no longer live for ourselves (Romans 12:1-2, Titus 3:3-8, 1 Peter 2:9-10) we live for him. There should be evidence of a life change in you. Your desires have changed (Psalms 37:4), We now love and care about different things now. Life isn’t just about you anymore. In Ephesians 4:28 we see that we now work not just because it’s a good thing to do, and not just to provide for ourselves, but so that we can provide for others who need the help. Also in Ephesians 4:32 we see that we now should have a forgiving attitude towards others. We are not seeking revenge on others, but rather are willing to forgive others as Christ has forgiven us. Your life has been changed (Romans 6:1-4, Ephesians 4:21-24).
What area of your life needs an Extreme Makeover?