Hope Together Conference
ABCs of Transformation Series: Freedom—Starts with the A-ha

ABCs of Transformation Series: Freedom—Starts with the A-ha

by Rolfe Carawan, M.Ed. and Lea Carawan, MA on April 10th, 2023

How did a simple conversation while on vacation with a friend turn into a transformational experience? Neither of us planned it or even had it on our minds, yet a few sentences describing a deep conviction became an “A-ha” moment. We were sitting in the hotel coffee shop in a small town in Washington state. It was the only place open because of the major snowstorm that had stranded us with our friends, Mark and Kathy, on our way to vacation.

Mark was an Associate Pastor at our church in Seattle. It was a large church, and Mark was responsible for multiple ministries and teaching several classes. I (Lea) was struck by how serene he appeared no matter how busy things got. Following my curiosity, I asked him, “Mark, how do you handle the stress and stay so peaceful when there is such demand for your time?” Mark’s response caught me completely off guard, “I don’t feel any stress. I don’t have to do anything that I am doing.” I asked, “What? What do you mean you don’t have to do anything?” He replied, “If I don’t do another thing but hang out on the couch, it doesn’t change how much God loves me. I don’t HAVE to do anything.”

Now to some, that doesn’t sound like the makings of an epiphany. However, his response struck like a bulldozer as questions flooded my mind. Why do I feel so stressed and driven? What is causing me to feel this pressure to perform? The answer was sobering. I believed the lie that to be found worthy of being loved, I had to prove myself through success and being accomplished. Without realizing it, I was trying to impress God and ensure I was love-worthy. What would it take for me to believe the truth that I was already utterly and fully loved by God? This was a moment where God truly opened my eyes to something I had heard a hundred times before, but what was I going to do about it now?

The A-ha is when you see something you haven’t seen before. It is often the beginning of transformation. It may be the revelation or epiphany that allows you to finally see a problem clearly and/or the solution to a problem. When God is ready to change us, He often pulls back the veil so that we might see Truth. While education will inform you, revelation from the Word of God will do much more—IT WILL TRANSFORM YOU!

It is such a joy to help facilitate an A-ha moment for someone. We believe it is up to the Holy Spirit to do the work, although we can help by creating a safe, loving environment for a conversation, asking a good question, really listening, and praying for revelation. As a coach, mentor or ministry leader, we try to listen for what God is doing in someone’s life, and it sometimes leads us to ask questions that may cause them to reflect on their core beliefs in a fresh way. We might ask, “What or who has had the biggest impact on how you see ______________?” “Was or is that a reliable source?”

Romans tells us that the transformation process begins with the renewing of your mind: “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will” (Romans 12:1–2 NIV). In other words, don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will is.

The ABCs of Transformation (The A-ha, Breaking Free, and Commitment to Change) is one of the key elements of the Transformed Living Coaching Model. As we continue our journey of personal transformation and help others along the way, we will discuss how God breaks us free from sinful patterns by exposing lies and replacing them with His revealed Truth. As we learn to cooperate with Him more fully and grow in obedience to His Word, God’s grace frees us through the power of His Holy Spirit. Transformation is a process. For some, the process is lightning quick, while for others, it is painfully slow and seemingly never ending. So, during the process, we encourage all to, “seek radical obedience, give abundant grace!”

Rolfe Carawan, MEd, is the President of LifeMatters Ministries, which focuses on discipleship, biblical principles, and tackling relevant issues of our times, and is also the Co-Founder of Carawan Global Group. Inspired by his passion to relieve suffering and release potential, Rolfe brings his real-world experience and strategies to individuals in every walk of life. Known for his contagious enthusiasm, his coaching draws out the best in people, igniting a renewal of energy, engagement, and productivity, as well as successfully transitioning people through change, transforming human behavior, strengthening relationships, and overcoming generational gaps.  His winning strategies have been developed over 30 years of successfully coaching, training, and motivating people. Speaking to organizations ranging from Fortune 500 and high-tech companies to healthcare and nonprofits, Rolfe has spoken to nearly a million people throughout America, as well as audiences on four continents. He is an author (Profiles in Character and Character Revolution), successful teacher, coach, trained counselor, and uses experiential learning methods to create healthier relationships at home and work, effectively implement change, and strengthen communication. Rolfe has worked and volunteered his services in a number of countries including Brazil, Ghana, Israel, Ukraine, Russia, Canada, and Mexico. He currently on the Board of Reference for the International Christian Coaches Institute (ICCI) and is a Certified Transformed Living Coach Trainer™. See more at www.transformedliving.org  

Lea Carawan, MA, is the founder of Transformed Living, a ministry that provides Bible-based resources and services designed to make disciples who love God, walk in freedom, and build life-giving relationships at home, work, and play. She and her husband, Rolfe, built a successful speaking, coaching, and consulting firm serving organizations ranging from Fortune 500 and high-tech companies to healthcare and nonprofits. For nearly 20 years, they helped leaders implement winning strategies that brought out the best in people. Lea was the cofounder and served as the Executive Director for the Congressional Prayer Caucus Foundation. For over a decade, she led the effort to equip and mobilize the largest network of federal and state elected leaders—nearly 100 sitting members of Congress and 900 state legislators—who are committed to standing for faith and implementing proactive strategies to advance religious freedom, prayer, and America’s Judeo-Christian heritage. She is a speaker, consultant, ordained minister, and multi-certified life, relationship, and spiritual formation coach and trainer. With a career spanning three decades, Lea has transitioned seamlessly between entrepreneurship, fashion, consulting, ministry, and motherhood. Lea has been a frequent speaker at women’s meetings, conferences, and marriage retreats around the world, including countries such as Brazil, Ukraine, and the United Arab Emirates. Lea is currently on the Board of Reference for the International Christian Coaching Institute (ICCI) and a Certified Transformed Living Coach Trainer. See more at: www.transformedliving.org  

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