Being born again is possible only through the work of the Holy Spirit. Jesus made use of the fact that the Greek word pneuma means both Spirit and wind in order to illustrate the process of conversion (John 3:8). The wind blows; none of us can start it, direct it, nor stop it. Its great power is beyond human control. We can only react to it, either resisting it or using its potential for our benefit.
Likewise, the Holy Spirit is constantly working upon the heart of every human being, drawing him or her to Christ. No one has control over its great saving and transforming power. We can resist it or yield to it. When we surrender ourselves to His convicting influence, the Holy Spirit produces a new life in us.
Is there any way to know if we have experienced the new birth? Yes. The Spirit works invisibly, but the results of His activity are visible. Those around us will know that Jesus created a new heart in us. The Spirit always produces an outward demonstration of the inward transformation He makes in us. As Jesus said, by their fruits you will know them (Matt. 7:20, NKJV).
The new life in Christ is not a patched-up life with a few external reformations. It is not a modification or improvement of the old life but a complete transformation.
Through the Holy Spirit, Christ implants in us new thoughts, feelings, and motives. He awakens our conscience, changes our mind, subdues every unholy desire, and fills us with the sweet peace of heaven. Though the change doesn’t happen instantly, over time we do become a new creature in Christ. We have to, because the original version, the one that came out of the womb, isn’t right with God.
Meditate on your life during the last twenty-four hours. To what degree did those who relate with you perceive Christ in your words, attitudes, and actions? Pray about those traits of character that still need to be modeled by the Holy Spirit.