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Colossians 1:13-14 – For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

John 15:15 – No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My father I have made known to you.

1 Peter 2:10 – For you once were not a people, but now you are the people of God; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

Romans 9:25-26 – As He says also in Hosea, “I will call those who were not My people, ‘My people’, and her who was not beloved, ‘beloved’. And it shall be that in the place where it was said to them, ‘you are not My people’, there they shall be called sons of the living God.”

Many professional hockey players talk about the business of hockey, and getting traded is part of the business. Many players out there know what it's like to be traded from one team to another. In hockey there is probably an array of emotions with it - if someone is on a team they enjoy, they will probably be disappointed. However, some may welcome it as a chance to move to a winning team.

Imagine yourself on a team where the players are not team focused, but self-serving. The coach is controlling, self-centered, and cares only about himself looking good at whatever expense to his players. Not only does he not care for them, he has distain for them. The longer you're with the team, the more you feel you are inheriting these attitudes yourself (1 Corinthians 15:33). The team is headed for disaster and you along with them. Then you get traded.

Your new teammates take care of you before they take care of themselves. The coach is charismatic, demanding but kind, takes care of his players, has an attitude of accomplishment, excellence, and success. You yourself are immediately changed (2 Corinthians 3:18) - having hope for the future and a renewed passion to pour your efforts out for this coach and your teammates.

This is what happens when we come to faith in Jesus Christ. We are traded. We are moved from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of the Son whom He loves (Colossians 1:13-14). We are traded from not being a people at all, to now being the people of God (1 Peter 2:10). We are no longer slaves, but friends of Jesus Christ (John 15:15). We are changed, we have hope, and we have a passion for our new team – the sons and daughters of the Living God (Romans 9:25-26).

How have you felt yourself being changed by the people you are surrounded with?
Have they brought you closer to Jesus, or pushed you farther away?

For additional reading see Titus 2:11-14, Romans 11:17-18

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