Change is a crazy thing isn’t it. Some folks are terrified of it, others are a little too fond of it and some are stuck somewhere in the middle trying to figure out what just happened. Even children react to change in one of those three ways. The past several months have brought so many changes to my life I can’t even remember what things used to be like and thanks to God’s abundant peace I think I’m ok with that.
My family has changed…we are now the proud parents of three high school graduates and two sons past the age of 21. My professional life has changed; I switched from little lovelies to middle lovelies and a new classroom on the opposite end of the hallway. Many of the 6th grade “traditions” changed and lots of old things were done a new way because the teacher before me and I have different gifts. There have been a hundred little changes along the way that have influenced the dynamics of the world around me. There have been new things and replacement things and missing things. There have been births and deaths. There has been sickness and health; good stuff and not good stuff. There have been funny things and great things and tricky things and yucky things. Through it all one thing remains very clear...I haven’t been in charge of any of it! Some of the changes I have liked others I have hated but through it all the love of the Father and his never-failing peace and presence has been larger than life.
As I sat in a folding chair last Sunday watching our “baby girl” graduate from high school I was overwhelmed with the ways things have changed in what seems like the blink of an eye. I resisted the urge to stand on my chair and scream, “STOP! I want the messy diapers and the sleepless nights rocking babies, the strained peas and Little Tike Cozy Coupe all back! I want wiggly kids in church, Cheerios crushed into the carpet and tiny Lego pieces under the table! I want back all those moments I didn’t appreciate because I was more worried about parenting by the book instead of by the heart.” Shannon hung a display of shoes in the garage at her open house. It started with her Baptism shoes and it was followed by First Communion shoes, Confirmation shoes, Softball cleats, Volleyball shoes and Cowboy boots. It was her journey and she didn’t know it but I sat in the garage looking at them sobbing! Those shoes and the pictures that went with them were a vivid display of change. She has grown and changed into a young woman we are so very proud of but none of it would have been possible if things had stayed the same and that would be sad!
I suppose we don’t often think about change in a positive way so I spent some time the past few days asking myself why. I have to believe that it boils down to a couple of things; lack of trust and dislike for being uncomfortable or uncertain. When my kids were babies or when I was in my ninth year of teaching first grade I knew what to expect; I was comfortable and content. I loved and trusted God but when things change I have to prove it. The funny thing about it is when I look back at all the times life changed in a big way, those are the times my faith grew the most. He was there through it all, guiding and loving and comforting. He knows what’s best and sometimes the best thing is to let the change wash over us and allow him to lead us to a place we can only get to as a result of that change. The world around us may change but his love never will! I may not love change, but I love Jesus and I have to work harder at knowing his love is the constant that will bring me beautifully, faithfully and obediently through anything and it will leave me better if I let it.
A Seed To Plant: Make a list of all the changes you are resisting and ask God to soften your heart and help you see his hand in it.
Blessings on your day!