Coming Full Circle...Embracing Change That Comes Our Way
Coming full circle through the changes and hard times in our lives will bring a new focus, sense of peace and clarity to our lives if we let it. Let's face it...change is inevitable in some form or fashion throughout our lives. Embracing the change, and allowing ourselves the freedom to experience it all, can make for a better today...EVERY DAY!
Jesus says, in John 14:27, " Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." Jesus had just warned his disciples about the betrayal he was going to face. They were not having it...because they were afraid. They were comfortable in their life with Jesus. He was teaching them, and they were taking baby steps in learning to be servants. He tells them that he will send them a helper (John 14:15-18).
I get it that they were afraid. They had witnessed first hand how critical people could be of Jesus. The religious leaders felt threatened by Jesus. Matthew 9:27-34 tells the account of Jesus healing the two blind men, and then a mute, demon-possessed man. The Pharisees claimed that Jesus healed the man with the power of the prince of demons. What???
One time, when they were walking through some grainfields on the Sabbath, they ate some of the heads of grain. The Pharisees saw it and accused them of being unlawful. (Matthew 12:1-8) Didn't they have anything better to do than follow Jesus around trying to find fault with him? This went on and on....don't believe me? Just read the Gospels (the books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John).
This is part of what scared the disciples. They KNEW what could happen to them. Their world was about to change drastically. Jesus spoke words of comfort to them. He spoke of peace. He told them about the Holy Spirit, the Helper, that he would send. You and I have the Helper available to us too. Yet, it still comes 'natural' to resist change.
Our fears can cause you and I to make decisions that we don't even realize we are making. In an article by Bill Gaultiere, Fear Not... 365 Days a Year. He says that God talks about fear over 500 times in the Bible, including 365 references to 'fear not'. I have not personally counted these references, but the point is that God says it A LOT! So, you and I have A LOT of encouragement to be courageous in the Bible.
Courage is the emotional force that propels us beyond our fears. The definition of courage, according to Merriam-Webster, is "mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty." When you and I tap into this strength we are able to accomplish great things. This is how God made us.
Change can be fearful for some...even down to changing our hair, the way we dress, the foods we eat, whether or not to workout. Others seem to embrace change, even welcome it! Could it be that change is the kryptonite for these brave folks?
Maybe, just maybe, the correct term would be remaining flexible. Embracing change necessitates remaining flexible. When something doesn't go your way, how do you react? Would you describe yourself as a person who needs a fixed schedule? Are you typically a 'creature of habit' who likes to have the safety and comfort of knowing what is coming your way day after day, year after year?
My life has changed a lot in the past six years. I moved from Las Vegas (my home of 14 years) to Oregon, and then to Florida. Personally, I went from married but living in different states, to back in the same state, to separated, to divorced, and now single for almost three years. My livelihood went from stay-at-home mom with three children at home to starting a new business after the graduation of my youngest this past June.
Did I see these changes coming seven years ago....? Only the part about my three children becoming post high school young adults. Change happens. Some we see coming and can plan for, some that evolves, and some that hits us upside the head as we wonder what(???). None of it surprises our God, though.
The Holy Spirit, our Helper, is available to guide us through the changes that come. He knew what was coming long before we ever took our first breath. "All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be." (Psalm 139:16) He's got you and he's got me. After evaluating the change that comes our way, our job is to do one of two things with change that comes our way;
1. If the change is beneficial, embrace it wholeheartedly.
2. If the change is detrimental, either for us or for others; (a) work towards a better change when we have the power and opportunity to do it, or (b) remove ourselves from the path of the change if we cannot effect change and we have the ability and means to do so.
Above all...pray. Pray for God to 'raise up and bring down' the leaders when the situation is above our capacity to effect positive change. Be part of the SOLUTION ... not just part of the PROBLEM. Paul instructed the Philippian believers to, "Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that I may rejoice in the day of Christ that I have not run in vain or labored in vain." (Philippians 2:14-16)
It takes courage to embrace both the wanted, and unwanted, changes we will encounter is this life. A life well-lived is marked by this kind of courage. Then we can eagerly await the day when each of us will one day meet our Savior face-to-face. THAT'S A FUTURE I CAN LOOK FORWARD TO!
Have a great day.....please visit our website, Love Life 2 Day, for more encouraging and uplifting articles, as well as great Bible study books.