By: Pastor Chris
“For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19 (NLT)
I saw a comic strip one day that made me laugh. A manager asked an employee if he had made the revisions he was asked to make on a particular presentation. The employee asked, “Do you remember what the changes were?” “No,” the manager replied. The employee responded by saying, “Then, yes, I made them.”
Let's be honest. Sometimes we act like the employee, convincing ourselves we made changes we really didn't make. I think this is because transitions are just plain terrifying. As Christians, how are we supposed to view and embrace change? Perhaps one of the best examples is found in the life of Abram. (You probably know him as Abraham.)
Abram seemed to have an ideal life in Haran. He had a beautiful wife, a large extended family, riches and notoriety. However, this all changed in Genesis 12 when Abram heard the voice of God for the first time. God asked Abram to leave everything he knew in Haran and follow Him to an unknown destination by faith. No doubt, Abram felt anxious. Yet, he responded to God's call for change with obedience. Regardless, Abram quickly learned transition is difficult.
In Genesis 15, God finally revealed the purpose of this change to Abram. God needed Abram to change (to move) so that God could change the world through him. The fatherless would become the father of many generations. To permanently mark this change, God changed Abram's name to Abraham in Genesis 17. During his lifelong journey of faith, Abraham would confront change on a consistent basis-always with obedience and trust in God's greater good.
Our lives are not so different from that of Abraham. To know Jesus is to have heard His call to leave the old things behind and begin a lifelong journey of faith by His side. Following Christ always requires change, because He is transforming us. Sometimes for change to occur on the inside, change has to happen on the outside. God often changes our circumstances to change us.
In the words of the great Bishop John Henry Newman, “To live is to change, and to be perfected is to have changed often.” While change can be scary, like Abraham, we must always trust in God's greater good. The change He creates always carries purpose.
Reflect and Respond:
- 1.What changes in your life are causing you anxiety?
- 2.What steps can you take to navigate these changes in a healthy manner?