Personal confession: I do not love change. Actually, I like to see things changed for the better, but once they are better, I like them to stay that way. I am a little bit change averse. Change is disruptive, creates uncertainty, and is a little bit stressful. Maybe even a lot stressful.

Yet we live in a culture of rapid change. We must be adaptable and flexible. Change is exciting. We are called to be agents of change, for the good. We want to change the world. We want to create change and be the change that is needed. Our God is always interested in brining about personal transformation. God created the seasons. The only one who never changes is Jesus, who “is the same yesterday, today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)

Heidi and I are the middle of a season of great change in our lives. New houses. New jobs. New staff. New church. New neighbors. New climate. New environment. New family members. New roles. New hobbies. New friends. New responsibilities. It is as if we are on a fast moving roller coaster that is banking through tight corners at a high speed. This bring up new hopes, expectations, dreams and fears.

We are not alone in the midst of these changes. We are going through them with a church and a staff of people who are having to adapt as well. The changes that we bring are taking place on top of an amazing foundation of prayer, faithfulness, and passionate devotion. There is a great legacy here at New Life Church. The people here have lived through joys and sorrows. Successes and disappointments. Real life has occurred here at New Life. We are never alone in the midst of change because Jesus is always with us.

There are some temptations and challenges that we face while going through change. These challenges especially occur when the change is unexpected or unwanted. The challenges are rooted in fear. There is uncertainty in change. Often there is also the absence of trust. Mistrust deepens our fears. Some changes create hurt, disappointment and even pain. Out of these fears and pains we are tempted to form alliances based upon our shared fears and pains. We easily become selective in the narrative we embrace, clouding our perception of what is true. We control what we can and become motivated by the hurt with selfish ambition in the name of justice. Disunity wedges into relationships and the fruit of the Spirit rots on the vine. Like Peter, we look at the wind and the waves and we start sinking.

These sound like some pretty big challenges and temptations. What is the alternative?

First of all, recognize that the Lord is at work. He is with you as you go through all these things. Second, we can look in the mirror with humility and deal with our own insecurities, fears, and sinful nature. We can pray for everyone involved in the changes that we are facing. We can choose to love as we navigate change. We can ask God for discernment and wisdom. We can address areas of fear and brokenness within our own lives . We can pursue opportunities for real ministry. We can seek to discover what the Holy Spirit is doing. We can have our own hearts cleansed and purified. We can choose to trust God, and worship God with generosity. We can identify and remove dysfunctional patterns that are holding people down. We can elevate and encourage those around us as we pursue the good thing that God is doing.

As we strive to do these things, we have confidence that “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6

“And we know that in all things God works together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28


FYI: While navigating these changes here are some resources I have found helpful: Managing Transitions (Bridges), The First 90 Days (Watkins), The Church of Tov (Barringer and McKnight).