Go take a good look at yourself.
Seriously… I’ll be here when you get back…
Ok, with that image in mind (good bad or otherwise) how much have you changed over the years. A bunch, some of the changes might be for the better, some maybe for the worse, some you have had some level of control over, others, well they just happened.
We joke about change, we make fun of our institutions, and groups that struggle with change, while at the same time often feeling mighty unnerved about the whole thing. Its not just the old fuddy duddies either, young or old, liberal or conservative, I have seen them all get mighty riled up when it comes to change. Some of the most liberal folks I know have an absolute conniption fit when something that they hold dear, or has “always been that way” changes. Speaking of which…
There is talk about changing the close of our Advent Candle light service. It has traditionally ended with the singing of “Silent Night” and everyone holding a candle. The music people want to make some changes to the program, and they are some good changes, and could really make for a wonderful evening and a time of preparation for Christmas that Advent is supposed to be!
However, when is change good, and when is change just done for changes sake? That is often a toughie and can be understood differently by different people.
I am going to listen to the feelings of others, pray and consider what it is exactly that this concert is about before I give the go ahead to this change.
Here are a few things that help me filter change in the church
– Is this change for changes sake? I ask this especially for those inside the church, pastors, church musicians, we far too often can get bored with the way things are, we do it all the time! But we need to remember we are not the only ones impacted by the change!
– If we change or keep things the same, how is the Good News of God in Christ communicated, lived and/or grown.
– What do we lose, or what do we gain from this change? There is always a little of both, does the pain of change outweigh the pain of keeping things the same.
– Is this a forever thing, or does it need to be so? Some changes go over well when people know that there is a good chance that if they don’t like it, things can change back or change until something works well! Sometimes a change needs to be “set in stone” so that we can get use to it. It may not always be easy but after a disciplined time we grow into the change and grow from the change knowing that there really isn’t another choice!
– Don’t down play the pain that change can cause. Not all pain is bad, but it must be acknowledged and honored.
– If a change doesn’t work, it doesn’t mean it is a failure. It is only a failure if you haven’t learned from it. Sometimes you know a change is needed, but what you do doesn’t work, learn, and grow, you will change as well!
Ok… I don’t know if this helps you at all, but it has helped me get a little perspective on change, and why I do what I do! Because most of what I do is about change; its about becoming who I am already in Christ Jesus my Lord.
What is difficult or blessed about change in your life?
Reply below if you would.