“For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son … ” (Romans 8:29).
What is Paul making reference to this this verse from Romans? Well, He is talking about the eternal plan of God to ensure that every Christian makes it. In the end. He is saying that God makes sure that every Christian will ultimately conform to Christlikeness. We will be changed “when he appears” so that “we shall be like him” (1 John 3:2). This is no empty hope or fluffy vision; this is you in the future. Every Christian is going to make it, in the end.
The difficulty that we often face is that we want Christlikeness without the process of become Christlike. We want it without the effort but the writer to the Hebrews says that we are to “strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord.” (Hebrews 12:14). Strive for holiness. That word “strive” means to “pursue” or “chase down”. This is to be our attitude when it comes to holiness because without it “no one will see the Lord”. So how do we strive for holiness? Paul put it this way when he wrote to the young Timothy “Discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness” (1 Timothy 4:7).
The only road to Christian maturity and godliness is to practice spiritual disciplines such as bible reading, bible memorisation, fasting & prayer, worship, evangelism, service and good stewardship. It’s impractical in the extreme but this is where we meet Jesus. In a world that says “do this and get these results”, the gospel is much more about God incarnating Himself and coming in human form, dying on the cross to save us from our sins. So these disciplines are not about habit but habitation. This is where we meet God, and in meeting Him we are changed from “glory unto glory” (2 Corinthians 3:18).