Read: Psalm 51:1-10 , Romans 9:21; Isaiah 40:6-8, and Acts13:1-4
We all desire some sense of stability and permanence in our lives. In many cases, we would have many things to stay the same in our lives. Yet, change is the unfinished sentence in life. Especially if those things brought joy and happiness into our lives. In such case we do not desire change. In most cases, we would resist change if it came to upset the status-quo. Something in us seems to resist change. Basically, people do not like change. The simple reason being is that it often brings some form of discomfort into our lives and tends to root us out of our comfort zone of familiarity.
Have you ever known anything to last forever and go without change. Change of any kind, except for when it benefits us, is mostly not welcomed. A change for the good often brings change itself, and it is this change most of us are willing to endure.
Christians, especially older ones, do not like to see change in the church. There is mumbling of disagreement when the choir changes to a new style of singing, when an existing pastor leaves, when a love one dies, when a long illness sets in, when the church wants to add on to the old building; when additional responsibilities are given to the church board. It is for sure, people inside and outside the church wishing things would just stay the same- I wish my happy married days would never change; I enjoy my grandchildren so much, I do not want them to grow up, else, I have nothing to pour my love and attention into, I wish it would stay springtime all the time. These things can never remain the same. Like the grass and flowers which come and go- changes will come(Isa 40:6-8). It is here, wherein, God is signaling us, through these verses, that change is inevitable and will come to us. We must get ready for change. We do this by trusting God always and in all things.
No living thing grows to maturity without going through a growth change. If it can’t make the change, it doesn’t survive! Believe it or not, the same is true for a child of God. If the child of God has not learned to accept change, he/she will not survive. Sometimes we may find it necessary to seek a needed change in our lives. For example, when the old furniture wears out we desire a change for new or used furniture. The same is true for our automobiles. These examples may be seen as welcomed changes.
But what about the changes which come and are forced upon our lives? What about the changes which come to us as the result of a decision we made, not realizing it would bring about an unexpected, unwanted change? Often times God, Himself, bring changes into the lives of His children so as to grow them, and or redirect them to a mission work which He wants accomplished (Isa 29:16).
For an example, Saint Paul went through some unexpected changes in his life which he didn’t anticipate (Isa 45:9). God stepped in and Paul ended up preaching and healing the very same Jewish people he persecuted, jailed and even killed. He started out to Damascus to persecute God’s faithful people, but ended up in Saudi Arabia, and Antioch preparing to preach God’s salvation gospel to these same Jews and lost Gentile heathens. Paul had not anticipated these kinds of changes in his life. Paul’s strong faith can be seen as being directly related to his willingness to accept the changes which God had placed in his life. Paul learned to accept these changes in his life and he matured as a servant of God. The most dramatic change in Paul’s life was when he personally met Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:3). Anyone who meets Jesus can never remain the same- there will be a challenge to change one’s life (2 Cor 5:17). We should never deal with God and not expect life changes.
King David, a great and powerful king, who also had God on his side, once ran and hid like a scared rat. He was hunted to be killed by one of his own sons and some of David’s trusted soldiers. David had just lost his kingdom, as well as, his entire harem of over eighteen hundred concubines and wives. This is some change and turn-a-round for David! David is completely out of his comfort zone, so to speak. All of this is the result of God’s pronounced judgment upon David for his adulterous relations with Bathsheba and for murdering her husband. Looking back, David pens this experience in the 51st Psalm and begs God to make a life- saving change in him, a change he was unable to make for himself (Ps 51:1-10).
There may come a time when we will plead and beg God to make a change in our lives, better than the one we have now. Changes come and changes go-through our lives. The question is: what kind of person will these changes leave behind: “better” person or a “bitter” person? Can you handle change, or will you let change handle you (Rom 9:21)? Expect change! Our reference is God, who never changes (Malachi 3:6), nor does the North Star. We need a “permanent fix” so as to be able to navigate our way home to God. Sometimes the enemy sends changes into our lives to confuse and defeat us. But our “unchanging” God, holds us steady through “all” changes.
The old Christian hymn encourages us to except change. “What a wonderful change in my life has been wrought, Since Jesus came into my heart.”