Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Time for change?

A friend of mine (You know who you are. Thank you for blessing me...) sent me an interesting mediation from Bishop T.D. Jakes called "Let It Go for 2006!" You may have heard of it. I did some looking around for it and it's pretty popular. In it, Bishop Jakes identifies circumstances where we, as Christians, have to let go of various people and things which cause more harm to us than good. While his mediation was indeed powerful and challenging, I find myself having a hard time putting his words into action. To do so requires me to make a lot of changes in my life.

I’ve discovered that I’m a creature of habit. Sadly, I’m the type of person who tries to avoid constant adjustment to things in my life. My ducks have to be in a row. Occasionally though, one seems to go astray. While I don’t usually panic about it, it does, at the very least, cause considerable discomfort for me. Even though I don’t have my entire life set in stone, I admit that I don't often welcome spontaneity in my life. This is major problem of mine.

You see, I believe that life is composed of three specific constants; you live, you die, and (gulp!) things change. It's almost inevitable.

Why, then, are we so afraid of change? Why does everything need to be in order before any movement takes place? Why are we so afraid to let go of certain people and things?

I believe that it’s because we enjoy being comfortable. When everything is going well -- our job is in tact, our love life is in order, our money is right, etc. -- we don’t have a care in the world. It seems to be the greatest time of our lives. But how many times have you heard someone say how thrilled they were to fix that unexpected flat tire in the cold (like I just did recently), or to have their heart broken by a loved one, or to get laid off from work with bills due and a family to support? Probably not that often. Instead, in those situations we grumble, moan and complain; largely because we wanted things to stay as they once were. We create comfort zones for ourselves and want to stay in them…regardless to where they are. As long as things are running smoothly for us, we’re “A OK”.

What's bad about this is that comfort zones are not safe havens from change. Why? Well, because there is minimal growth in comfort zones. They only lead to complacency and self-satisfaction. Change provides the necessary instability to force us ‘out of the box’ and into the sovereignty of God. Change is the alarm clock that we need to jar us from self-sufficiency to total dependency. In other words, we no longer rely on definitive routine; but rather on an uncertain dependence on God. Change shows us that we are not in control. In Ecclesiastes 3 (made famous by the Beatles), we are reminded that life is full of changes and that there is a time for everything. When it comes time for us to hand control over to God, we must be able to do so. There are no trump cards to play; no “get out change free” cards; no way to ‘skip’ a turn.

I think that the solution to this whole thing is to expect change. The more that you expect change, the less stressed you are when it actually comes. Most of the time, we are stressed out because we were unprepared for the disruption of our safe atmosphere. But if we understand that change is good for us and helps us to stay focused and dependent on God, I believe that we will begin to enjoy even the uncomfortable times. Those are the times when God can deliver us from our weakness and deposits that much needed strength in us.

Am I ready to make a change?

Where do I start?


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Joanne said...

right on.. well said.. you nailed it again.

this is why i'll never stop finding my way back to your posts.

keep bringing it friend, keep bringing it!

Anonymous said...

Yes hi, My name is Jhonnita Moore and I really enjoy you daily entries