Is change a decision we can control or an invitation to ride the wild, untamed? Or both?
I’ve been trying to wrap my head around change—what part is God-initiated and what part is human choice. There’s something deep inside that drives me to find my true north, which inspired the acrylic painting, “Time for Change.” The brooch she wears reminds me to keep searching.
Change excites and yet terrifies because while ushering in the new, it requires leaving behind the familiar, the secure, the way things have always been.
And although I’ll probably never be able to fully understand how change works, I’m more determined than ever to partner with my Creator instead of opposing the possible.
Opportunity rarely lands in the hand but snaps past to incite the chase. The wind of God’s Spirit ruffles our well-pinned plans, plucking a talent off the clothesline of our control; He then extends an invitation to grasp the cloth and ride the wind.
I’ve come to discover that these unexpected occurrences invite me to use my gifts in new situations with new people. I become curious to see where talents will take me and so dare to fly.
Change, at times, means moving to new locations. This is the hardest kind of change for me because I’m closely tied to my family. Yet I’ve followed this pied piper of soul into foreign lands when something within beckoned the following.
Change can also mean moving closer to those you love. This is one of the changes I’m currently wrestling with as my children have children, and I want to be more involved in their lives.
Over the course of a lifetime, I’ve come to discover other characteristics of change I’d like to share:
- Change is uncomfortable. When I gave my heart to the Lord, I chose to follow not flail. And yet one must flail to embrace change! So much uncertainty comes with change. So much analyzing, deciding, planning and trying.
- Change requires humility and flexibility. We rarely get it right the first time but must endure failing, re-evaluating, and re-trying.
- Change takes time; time spent praying for God’s wisdom, imagining new scenarios, exploring new possibilities. It’s a process to leave the old and embrace the new. It doesn’t happen overnight. We craft plans and then rework them a thousand times over in our minds and hearts before we step out and actually do the new before us.
- Change isn’t as much a path as it is a relationship. The good Lord uses change to draw us to himself so we can hear his heartbeat and co-create, to partner with him in the doing.
Change can entice at any time but seems to especially tantalize as the year ends. When special events with family and friends come to an end, we find ourselves thinking about those New Year’s Resolutions. At this time of the year, we dare to dream beyond the comfortable, the stable, the dependable.
Yet as enticing as change is, we have a choice. We can ride the wind or return to the clothesline of our control where we’ve neatly pinned our plans. I don’t know about you, but I’m all in for the ride!
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