It’s often said that change is the only constant in life. Yet, humans are evolutionarily predisposed to resist change because of the risk associated with it. Despite this resistance to change, it is more important than ever. Napoleon once said, “One must change one’s tactics every 10 years if one wishes to maintain one’s superiority.” In today’s society the pace of change is immensely faster, and it will only continue to accelerate.
Organizations and people that don’t embrace change are bound to lose ground and stagnate. When you are anxiously anticipating a change–or in the midst of a challenging one—be encouraged with one of these quotes to help you plow through it:
• Change is the law of life. And those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future. -John F. Kennedy
• If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. -Maya Angelou
• I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples. -Mother Teresa
• Change your thoughts and you change your world. -Norman Vincent Peale
• He who rejects change is the architect of decay. The only human institution which rejects progress is the cemetery. -Harold Wilson
It sure was a long time coming! For months, we had suffered from detours and delays. Traffic was often backed up so badly along the construction site that I began avoiding the area altogether when possible. Sometimes the congestion was so bad that I wished they had never attempted to “improve” the roads in the area. Then after having endured lane closures, work zones, and long, long delays for what felt like forever, I found myself this one day coasting along on a beautiful new stretch of smooth tarmac. I was so excited!
Isn’t life like that? We get used to our regular routes and ruts. Even though they’re a little problematic, they’re also comfortably familiar. We swerve around the potholes and think nothing of it. Then we get annoyed with somebody who isn’t familiar with our well-worn route and doesn’t know how to navigate it. Finally, we see the big machines and yellow cones and realize it’s time for a change, and that improvement—perhaps long overdue—is about to happen.
Just like the Department of Transportation’s road improvements, God’s work in our lives doesn’t just happen overnight. Whether it’s time for a widening, a little resurfacing, or an entirely new stretch, it takes a lot of courage to allow Him to lead us someplace new.
Often, the preparation seems like it will last forever. Then the day finally comes and you’re really on your way. A few twists and turns and you just seem to sail along to the place God has prepared for you. Gone are the ruts, the bumps and holes, the delays! It may take a little time to get used to the new road, but it is so worthwhile.
As we approach the start of a new year, or a new project—or even if we’re not there yet, but we’re still at the stage of considering our options—it is good to think about new roads. Is God doing something new? Do those delays that test our patience so much mean something really smooth is just about ready to roll out?
Let’s face the future with excitement and anticipation. Rather than lament the old roads, or bemoan the hassle the changes are bringing, let’s fix our focus on what’s ahead. Life has ups and downs, stops and starts, but eventually we’ll find ourselves once again happily sailing along on the open road of God’s plan for our lives.
2 Peter 1:21 ESV / For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
1 Peter 2:9 ESV / But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Romans 9:1-33 ESV / I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit— that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh. They are Israelites, and to them belong the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises. To them belong the patriarchs, and from their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ who is God over all, blessed forever. Amen. …