Change is not negative
Have you ever looked back to your high school year books? Statistics show that one of the most commonly written phrases in a year book is “don’t ever change.” I want you to take a moment to consider that phrase. Consider the implications of what it would mean if we never changed from our high school selves. Consider even further if we continued to be the exact same person throughout our lives.
I’m not sure about you, but personally I’m thankful I didn’t take this piece of written nostalgia to heart over the years. In fact, I’m quite sure the world is better for this having been thrown to the wind. Even more so, I’m positive God does if truth be told encourage change.
Let’s take a look at the type of person I was in school. I was flimsy. I hate to admit it but I was. Sure, I was passionate about things so long as they didn’t interfere with each other. The moment the next “sparkly” piece of life presented itself, I was moving on. I LOVED my dance team, until practice and performance began to collide with orchestra (I was certain I was going to be famous on my violin). I was dedicated to orchestra until the time allocated for practice began to interfere with writing my research paper (because obviously I was headed for Ivy League). Each time I moved on, it broke a piece of me off and left something unfinished.
I was full of it. There is no better way to put this. I thought I was doing it all. I was working, going to school, staying on my own. I was living life and no body was going to convince me otherwise.
More than any of this, I was naive. No matter how much I was pressured, I couldn’t see past what was happening in my own little world. And let’s face it; I just described about 99% of high school kids.
"And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit."
[2 Corinthians 3:18]
[2 Corinthians 3:18]
God wants change in our lives. It isn’t always easy and doesn’t always come with a manual of how to pass through the valley. God requires a change of person. God requires a change of speech. God requires a change of spirit. God requires a transformation.
The Word tells us there is a time for everything.
In honesty, I’m glad I’ve changed. I could never survive in the work industry if I was still as flimsy as before. I’m thankful for learning to stick it out...to fight through the negativity and create a positive ending. I’m glad I learnt to experience the world. No I’m not a seasoned traveler. But even when I was flying to South Africa, I couldn’t comprehend the world outside of the one I’d built in my home town. I have learned to look forward, to plan, to see more than what is just in front of me.
I guess we could all look back and say; yea I’m still the same. Probably, you still have a similar sense of humor or generally enjoy the same music. Maybe your food preferences are the same or your overall character (dependable, respectful, etc.) is the same. But in fact, we have all changed.
"For at that time I will change the speech of the peoples to a pure speech, that all of them may call upon the name of the LORD and serve him with one accord."
Scripture tells us God wants to change and renew us. He wants us to be living a life that stands out against the “world.” He wants us to let go of the old to embrace the new.
I see Him doing this now in my life. We are less than two weeks out from the move to our new home. There has been so much emotions happening lately it has been difficult to categorize. However, change is the biggest factor.
Last week, I paid over the deposit for our house! Yes, my peeps, we finally FINALLY found a house! I was giddy with joy over this. Had someone told me a month ago I would feel this way, I’d have laughed at them. I couldn’t imagine feeling so excited about moving.
The time apart has changed our perspective. Hubby and I have noticed a lot of holes in our lives that needed attention. Holes in our marriage, in our parenting, and in our budget. These holes were made obvious by change. Call it a spring cleaning of sorts. We have been spring cleaning our lives!
This was God’s doing. He sent His Spirit to guide us and eventually the waiting made sense. Often God calls out a change in our physical whereabouts. We are expected to follow without question knowing that God is in control.
“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.” Heb 11:8
Sometimes God requires a change in our identity. Consider the well known partier who becomes saved or the drug dealer who gives his life over to Christ. “No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.” Gen. 17:5
I don’t think when we wrote “don’t ever change” we meant it so literally. However, when God calls us to change....He really means it. He is asking us to shed the old self for a new perfected one in His grace. The process is not always easy. The Israelites wandered for years. Noah and his family waited days and days on a boat. And Abraham was virtually homeless for a stage. But their end results are beyond any beauty this world can provide us.
Maybe, just maybe, we can stop considering change as a negative impact on our lives. Maybe we can embrace the process for what God has intended in our lives.
“There is need of a great revival of spiritual life, of truly fervent devotion to our Lord Jesus, of entire consecration to His service. It is only in a church in which this spirit of revival has at least begun, that there is any hope of radical change in the relation of the majority of our Christian people to mission work.” ~ Andrew Murray
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