Have you ever heard the expression, “Can a leopard change its spots?” Did you know that comes from the book of Jeremiah chapter 13? Basically, the idea is that a leopard has spotted skin and that is what identifies it as a leopard. No matter how hard the leopard tries, it is stuck with spotty skin! The idiom means that people generally don’t change. I would imagine you can think of a time where someone you knew seemed to really have changed, only to revert back to the old ways, dashing hopes and leaving everyone in their lives disappointed and discouraged. Change doesn’t come easily.
Now, enter the Apostle Paul, and the living God: Paul makes an earth shattering statement in 2 Corinthians 5. “If anyone is in Christ he is a new creature!” What? Did you get that? A leopard may not be able to change its spots, but if it dies it can become something new; maybe a tiger, or elephant—that doesn’t have spots! No, this is not some reincarnation thing; the leopard is just an example. Elephants have different looks and behaviors than leopards. If the leopard can become an elephant his life changes—and no more spots!
The offer on the table from God is this: you can try as hard as you like to change your character. You can huff and puff and try to blow the old ways away, but it just doesn’t work. God offers you a new life and more importantly a new identity!! The only way to change a life is to have a change in identity. One thing we can say about the transgender community is that they understand the power of identity, and who a person believes they are changes everything! Gender transformation is radical and their lives are different. But the identity we get is from a miraculous new birth and changed heart. I am not comfortable in the old spotted skin of my “leopard days” because I am no longer that creature! Ask the butterfly how it works to eat leaves. No can do!
Don’t miss this super-duper important section on identity. Learn about new values and motives and even a new purpose! If you know someone who is struggling with their life call them up and share a link with them; ask them to listen in to this powerful set of truths from 2 Corinthians chapter 5!