Certainly, all who name Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior want to become like Him. The problem seems to be “the process” we all go through as the heavenly Father molds and forms us into the very image of Christ. It is written in Philippians 2:13-15,
13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.
14 Do all things without murmurings and disputings:
15 That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world.

Think about that for a moment, you never read about Christ Jesus complaining, nor blaming others for his trials and hardships, but until WE develop the ability to endure all we go through without murmuring and complaining, we have no hope of Christ being formed in us. You see, as it says in verse 13, it is GOD which works in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure. No, we are not pawns on a game board that God and Satan move us around like game pieces to entertain themselves. There IS a purpose in your hardships, that CHRIST BE FORMED IN YOU.

The Apostle Paul worked hard to teach others to follow Christ, and to let the Father form Christ in them, and you will note Paul told them to “follow me AS I FOLLOW CHRIST”. In other words, Paul became the example of patience and grace and obedience so that others could see him and do likewise. But, oh my, the power that Paul walked in because of that. He was able to heal the sick, raise the dead, and cast out devils, even as Christ Jesus commanded and EMPOWERED His disciples to do.

It is written in Matthew 10:8, Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out devils: freely ye have received, freely give. Ok, here’s the test: how much of that are YOU presently doing? Christ Jesus is not stingy in handing out the power to do His works, but it goes to those who are truly “disciples” of His, that is, those who are obedient and living according to His Word. As His disciples, we are to “Walk the walk and talk the talk”,  in other words, the world should be able to expect the very same things from us today as they did from the original disciples. Sadly, there are many “pretenders” out there who “talk the walk”, but can’t “deliver the goods”. There is a reason for that: Christ is not formed in them. They are satisfied to live with one foot in the world and one foot in the Kingdom of God. Only, they are deceiving themselves, for they don’t really have even ONE foot in the Kingdom of God. They are still in the world, and carnal.

Don’t you long to have Christ formed in you, so that when you encounter someone sick, that the mercy of God rises up in you, and you can lay hands on them and heal them? Aren’t you hungry to get up every day looking for opportunities to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with those you meet? You will, if Christ be formed in you, for it can be no other way. Do you know what is standing in the way of that happening to you? Not God, not Satan, not Jesus, but only YOU! God gives each and every one of us the opportunity to be followers of Christ Jesus. The Gospel has been preached all over the inhabited world, and those who will follow Him, do.

Are there hardships, and a price to pay for following Jesus? Of course. For the most part, our hardships are telling our own flesh to sit down and shut up, and follow Jesus, no matter what. It may cost us friends, family, jobs, homes, money, and even our life. But consider the reward of standing before Christ Jesus in the judgment and hearing Him say, “Well done my good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your LORD.”

More than anything else, that’s what I want to hear in that day. Do I do everything right? No, there is none good, no, not one. But if I allow Christ to be formed in me, He gives me grace, and I have a reward. If you allow Christ to be formed in you, then likewise, YOU have a reward to look forward to. While we may live in this body up to even a hundred years or more, that’s a drop in the ocean compared to eternity. Think of your whole lifetime as being a drop of water in the ocean. Even that can be numbered, yet eternity cannot be. God is giving YOU the unique opportunity to live forever, for Christ to be formed in you. Don’t pass it up, it’s the bargain of a lifetime!

And while He is forming Christ in you, you can have the joy of helping others find Jesus, as you do His good works, loving others, healing the sick, cleansing the lepers, raising the dead and casting out devils. He said, “FREELY YE HAVE RECEIVED, FREELY GIVE.” There’s plenty to go around, God isn’t running out of power. God wants to show Christ to everyone on earth, and He wants to use YOU to do it!