Do you like change? That is a difficult question to answer and the best answer is probably “yes” and “no.” Most of us probably can’t wait for winter to end and spring to begin. That would be a positive change. On the other hand, as we age, we can be troubled by the rapid pace in which our world changes. It is very difficult to keep up with all of the modern electronic gizmos. But change happens whether we like it or not, so the key is learning how to adjust.
Way back in 1964 a young musician named Bob Dylan wrote a song he titled, “The Times They Are a-Changin.” I doubt that he could imagine all the changes that would occur over the next 50 years. I've lived through it and sometimes I cannot comprehend everything that has happened – for better or worse. Some change is necessary, but difficult. Jesus told a parable that taught you cannot put new wine in old wine skins. It just doesn't work. Sometimes old methods don’t work with new ideas. That’s reality. We must try and learn to embrace new ways that are positive and allow old ways that have seen their day to fade away. That must happen in the work place, in our personal lives, and even within the church.
A couple of years ago Elaine and I opened our home to a son, daughter-in-law, and two grandchildren. It was hard on them to leave their home in Colorado, but the job situation forced them to leave. I must admit there were many days during the last two years when I wanted a little privacy, but that was secondary to helping a family in need. Now the kids have found teaching jobs in Florida and will be leaving in mid-February. It was hard to adjust to the changes of four new people in our home but it will be even more difficult to adjust to an empty house. Change can be that way – a time of hardship and at the same time, great joy!
This church is facing changes. Can we continue to stay where we are? What alternatives are possible? Are we being good stewards spending money on a building much too big for us? Would we be faithful to our heritage to leave? The questions are difficult and the answers will not always be satisfying. Nevertheless, change can be dealt with when the Lord is in the lead. When we allow Jesus to be our source of strength we are empowered. We read in 2 Corinthians: “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” Don’t fear change – embrace it – and give God control of it!