The Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris is a spectacular building. Its architecture is spellbinding, and its stained-glass windows and splendid interior features are breathtaking. But after centuries of standing sentry over the Paris landscape, it is falling apart. Time and pollution have taken their toll, and it is time for this glorious structure to be repaired.

So the people who love this eight-century-old landmark are coming to its rescue. In a recent year, the French government set aside more than six million dollars to help restore the church. Its supporting flying buttresses must be shored up. Many of its exterior stonework needs to be replaced. And the roof needs work. The money will be well spent, because for many this ancient cathedral stands as symbol of hope.

What’s true of buildings is also true of us. Our bodies, like this old church, will eventually look a bit worse for wear! But as the apostle Paul explains, there’s good news: while we might gradually lose the physical vibrancy of youth, the core of who we are—our spiritual being—can be continually renewing and growing (2 Corinthians 4:16).

          As “we make it our goal to please [the Lord]” (2 Corinthians 5:10), relying on the Holy Spirit to fill and transform us (Ephesians 5:18, 2 Corinthians 3:18), our spiritual growth need never stop—no matter what our “building” looks like.