The New (Wo)Man Pt. 3: Transformation Requires Intimacy
It does not mean that we are robots unable to freely think for ourselves, but what it does mean is that we think the way He made us to think. Read more..
Let me tell you why you’re here. You’re here because you know something. What you know you can’t explain. But you feel it. You’ve felt it your entire life. There’s something wrong with the world. You don’t know what it is, but it’s there. Like a splinter in your mind. Driving you mad. It is this feeling that has brought you to me.” – Wachowski, Matrix
Classic! I would bet that almost everyone reading this post knows what movie this is from. It’s definitely “The Matrix”. One of the best movies ever in life! Well at least in my opinion. Anyone who believes in the supernatural knows that this movie is so on point as to how it shows a correlation of the natural to the supernatural. Many people on a day to day basis can sense that there is an underlying tension in our world that is caused by the unseen. Even if people are unbelievers they can pick up the frequencies of the supernatural, and most will even acknowledge it as such. They may not label it as angel versus demon or God versus Satan. But they definitely sense and will acknowledge that there is a supernatural realm to our world.
Like Neo, in the Matrix, many of us sense the need for change in our reality and do not like living conformational lives. We go from day to day not quite being able to pinpoint what our underlying angst is and have become masters of suppressing and disregarding our senses. Zoning out mentally, better known as disregard, is a coping mechanism that too many of us have become skilled at. This causes us to live on auto-pilot and never choose change. But much like Neo we need to pay attention to what we sense to invite change. Transformation is the change that we need.
I love the symbolism and parallels in this movie with reality. In the famous pill scene Morpheus invites Neo to allow him to open his eyes to what is real. As he is talking to Neo, Morpheus points out to Neo that he sees that he doesn’t like living a conformational life in their world. Neo lacks the autonomy he desires and is unable to make changes as he would like. This is the very thing that brings Neo to Morpheus—the need for change—and Morpheus points that out to him. During their initial conversation Morpheus tells says to Neo, “You are a slave, Neo. Like everyone else, you were born into bondage, born into a prison that you cannot smell, or taste, or touch. A prison for your mind. Unfortunately, no one can be told what the Matrix is. You have to see it for yourself.” Not long after that Morpheus offers Him transformation through freedom of his mind, from the present state of the world they are living in to the new age, and tells Neo that he is “The One” to bring it about. Neo accepts Morpheus’ offer and takes the pill. When he does this, he is no longer the same.
By taking the pill Neo allows Morpheus into his life as a counselor and he becomes like a father figure for Neo. As he sits and talks to Morpheus, Neo becomes a new man by gaining a new mind. This causes him to grow in his understanding of that what He sees is not real, and what He does not see is real. Neo sitting in Morpheus’ presence begins the building of a relationship where Neo makes gradual changes that lead him to be the autonomous person he wants to be. By spending time with Morpheus’, Neo discovers who he is and his purpose.
Paul tells us in the Romans 12:2, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” The Greek word for transform in this verse is metamorphoó from which we get our English word metamorphosis. It is actually a compound word. Metá means change after being with and morphóō means changing form in keeping with inner reality. These words comprehensively mean transformed after being with; transfigured.
Like Morpheus does with Neo, The Father invites us to talk to Him. The only way that we can change is by being in the presence of God. In His presence is where we can sit and allow our hearts and minds to be open to Him for true transformation to take place. The word for mind in this text is noús and it means “the God-given capacity of each person to think and reason; mental capacity to exercise reflective thinking; the organ of receiving God’s thoughts, through faith for the believer.” Transformation in us, to bring about change in our reality, first takes place by our minds being changed to reflect the mind of God.
When God gives us a new mind, He teaches us how to think like Him. Our thoughts reflect His thoughts because we are taking on the character of His mind. It does not mean that we are robots unable to freely think for ourselves, but what it does mean is that we think the way He made us to think. We have righteous thoughts and not thoughts of evil. Our thoughts are then divinely purposeful instead of diabolically self-sabotaging.
I love how Neo’s and Morpheus’ names reflect their characters. Neo means new and Morpheus’ means god of dreams. As Neo listened to Morpheus and allowed him to counsel him, he received the mind of Morpheus. Neo’s thoughts begin to reflect Morpheus’. Neo became new and free thinking moral agent. He was awakened to what is real and was no longer enslaved to what he could not see. Morpheus was the one to speak to him while he was asleep and unaware of what he needed for his eyes open to. Morpheus was the one who changed Neo. When Neo begin to think the thoughts Morpheus gave him, he also acted differently. He taught Neo how to fight like him to bring in the new age to come, and Neo became secure in his identity and purpose. While teaching him to fight Morpheus tells Neo to not think that he is a good fighter but to know it. Morpheus reproduced his image in Neo.
God the Father wants to same kind of intimacy with each one of us. He longs for us to come to Him and learn from Him everything He wants to teach us. God wants us to sit with and talk to Him, allowing Him to transform us from the inside out. When we allow God to change our inward reality, our outward reality and how we act will follow. He will teach us how to resist the enemy like Morpheus taught Neo, and we will come to know who we are and our purpose by getting to know our Father. We will no longer only think the things about ourselves God tells us, but like Neo we will know them without a doubt. We do not have to let the enemy have control over us. Paul tells that God desires for us a spirit of self-discipline (2 Tim. 1:7 and Gal. 5:23) and for us to look to the things that are not seen in the age to come by not being conformed to this age (2 Cor. 4:18 and Rom 12:2). All of this happens in our Father’s presence. God wants to reproduce His image in us. Sit in His presence.
P.S. Enjoy the movie clips 🙂