Author Ava Pennington
Author Ava Pennington
Frog in pot - Adapt or Transform?

Adapt or Transform?


I’ve heard it said that when you move from a cold climate to a warm one, your blood “thins.” After the recent cold snap, I can attest to the fact that fifty degrees in New York feels warm, but after more than twenty years in south Florida, fifty degrees requires a jacket!

The experts tell us blood doesn’t actually thin due to moving to a warmer climate. Maybe it’s my age. Or maybe it’s all relative to what we’re conditioned to expect . . . and what we adapt to. Problem is, adapting is not always a good thing.

Remember the story of the frog in the pot? He sat in a pot of cold water and remained there even when the water was slowly brought to a boil. The cold-blooded frog adapted to the changing temperature until it killed him.

I, too, have sometimes adapted to my circumstances despite inherent dangers. Perhaps it was because I didn’t want to make waves. Or maybe I didn’t want to be known as one of “those” religious people. So I allowed my conscience to thin and adapted myself to situations I shouldn’t have been part of.


Conform or Transform?


Just as the frog should have guarded himself against the incremental changes in water temperature, I need to guard myself against compromises that appear small, but are just as dangerous. After all these years, it’s easy for me to believe the lie that it’s okay to accept certain things because I’m older and can handle temptations that would defeat a younger person. But instead of conforming, I can submit to the Holy Spirit and be transformed. As the apostle Paul wrote to the early church, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Rom. 12:2).

A new year stretches before us, each day a blank page waiting to be filled. Day by day, the question before me will be, “Is my hunger for God and His Word greater than my desire to fit in by conforming to the world?” I want to be more intentional about standing firm against even the smallest compromises that have the potential to lead me away from what I know is right. Will you join me?

How have you been conforming to the world?
How will you allow the Holy Spirit to transform you instead?


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  1. Nancy E. Head

    Ava, this is the best discussion of the cooking frog I’ve heard yet. May we all hop out of the water before it’s too late. Thanks and God bless!

  2. Sue

    What a great reminder!! Sometimes it feels so much easier to adapt than be transformed. But your right….we are never too old. This is a great summation of our study last week in Amos. Keep ‘em coming, my friend!!

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