“… Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me …” 

— Psalm 51:10 NKJ 

“Being a Christian is more than just an instantaneous conversion—it is a daily process whereby you grow to be more and more like Christ.” 

— Billy Graham

“Lord Jesus, create a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me.” When you pray that from the heart, then you’re getting down to real business. Becoming the man God wants us to be involved so much more than going to church each week, serving on a ton of ministry committees, or taking part in a plethora of outreach programs. Christianity is not about going through religious motions. It’s about God taking our old hearts, cleaning them, and recreating them. It’s about you and God connecting on a deeper level. Galatians 5:25 (KJV) says “if we live in the spirit let us also walk in the spirit”. When you walk in step with the Spirit through His Word and obeying His lead, Christ’s character is being formed in you. That’s what creates real and lasting change. Paul’s earnest goal for his disciples wasn’t that they get involved in more religious activity, but that Christ was formed in them. “My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you” (Galatians 4:19). When we ask God to create a clean heart in us, in reality, we are asking Him to make us more like Jesus. 

When asked about the process of sculpting his famous statue of David, Michelangelo said, “I knew David was in there so I just chipped away the stone that didn’t look like him.” That’s what the Holy Spirit does to us. As we draw into an intimate relationship with God, the Holy Spirit begins the process of chipping away the things that don’t look like Jesus and then shaping us into His image. Authentic change and healing are the results. Anything else amounts to religious self-help. 

When we start becoming more like Jesus, another wonderful thing happens. People begin to notice something different in us. We’re not trying to be different we just are as a result of being in His presence. Roy Hicks Jr. wrote, “Imagine a man who has been so conformed to Jesus’ image that just by knowing him the people he comes in contact with every day—his wife, his children, men and women at work—discover God and their own individual potential.”

Become the man God has called you to be. Let Him create a clean heart in you and chip away at those things that are not like Jesus. 

Prayer to IGNITE

God, cleanse my heart. I give you permission to chisel me into your image. Draw me by your Spirit into fellowship with you and let my life be a reflection of you. 

*A devotional from “Ignite Your Faith” by Dr. Tim Clinton and Max Davis