Monday, October 20, 2014

When You Can’t See What Change Will Look Like


Change has been going on around me lately, and it’s been hard to see what it will look like when the dust settles. It’s not change of my making, so there is uncertainty of how it will affect me, as well as others.

Maybe you’re there too…waiting to see what the upcoming days will look like…standing by until everything settles down and a new normal begins…fighting the feeling of not being able to control anything.

…a new boss.

…a job transfer away from family and friends.

…layoffs and unemployment.

…the diagnosis and future check-ups.

…separation and divorce.

Change, whether personal or work-related, is unsettling. It creates questions that can’t be answered right away. It puts us in wait-and-see mode.

I don’t particularly like wait-and-see because it gives me time to imagine different scenarios, which cause me to worry and grow negative. It gives me time to get stressed out before anything has actually happened.

That’s how I started waiting. It was easy to grumble because others were grumbling with me. And when I was alone, I stewed. I complained under my breath, and to God.

And then I realized a couple of things. One, I didn’t like what it was doing to me. Frankly, I have enough to deal with this year without adding something else that hasn’t even happened yet.

Second, and more importantly, I realized that if this change is something which God has brought about, who am I to question it?  

I knew I needed a change of heart and attitude—and it wasn’t something I could just convince myself of. 

I needed God to change my heart and my attitude.

I laid it before Him and I prayed. Then, because I tend to take things back, I gave it to Him again and kept praying.

And I felt something start to change. I started to relax.

Nothing in the situation had changed yet. The unsettled dust was still thick and impossible to see through, and I was still in wait-and-see mode with others.

But God was there. I had invited Him in and He was at work—starting with me.

I stopped worrying and started wondering if the what-ifs would be positive instead negative.

I kept Romans 8:28 in front of me…
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28 NLT
And I reminded myself of the times I’ve seen God bring something good from a situation that seemed bad—especially things that have happened this year and how they worked together. I couldn’t see it at the time, but in hindsight, the pieces fit together perfectly…as only God’s plans can.

I felt God changing my attitude. I was seeing things from a positive perspective…both in the situation, and in my growth with Him.

And I felt God changing my heart. I know that not all change is what I would like to see happen, but I know I can trust Him. If the change that comes about is not in my favor, then God has something different planned for me. Something He hasn’t shown me yet.

And where that normally brings fear, I felt peace and comfort.

Have you gone through a time when you knew change was coming, but you couldn’t see what it would look like? How did you walk through it, and did you feel God walking along side of you?

In Christ,
Laura 

Photo credit: K. Rath, Oct. 2014

9 comments:

  1. Laura... These words are so real to me. Plenty of change in my world, too. Maybe there always is. I love the way you walked through the worry, the surrender, and the surrendering over and over again. This is SO TRUE. Thank you for the reminder that peace is available. And thank you for linking at Unforced Rhythms.

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    1. Beth, thank you for your kind words and encouragement. Your comment made me think of this...maybe surrendering to Him daily is the key to experiencing peace. (Now, if it were only that easy.) God bless!

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  2. I'm struggling through change, loss of a job, and no job yet on the horizon. I want to trust God, that His timing is perfect, but it's been difficult. Praying you have a blessed week.

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  3. Laura,
    Change is so very hard but what helps me is what you did...praying, giving it to God again and again...and reminding myself of what is true about God and His promises....praying God continues to give you His peace and reassure you of His provision and good plan ....In hindsight, those are often the times I grew the most but it was still hard in the middle.

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  4. Laura, 'tis been awhile since I came by and God knew I needed to read these words. I am one to take things back once I have given them to the Lord. Prayer will get us through when and if we just quiet our hearts and lift all to the One Who can rain His peace upon us.
    Thanks for encouraging me today.
    Caring through Christ, ~ linda

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  5. You would think as an army wife that change would come easy for me... But my Type A planner-controlling self keeps it from happening. Each time we move or face crazy army schedules/training/deployments, it is all I can do not to panic/grumble/totally flip out.

    Fortunately, God always comes through for me. I love the quote by Corrie ten Bloom (I think it was her anyways.) "We can trust an unknown future to a known God."

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful post, sweet Laura. Love you.

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  6. I dislike change so much that I usually put up with bad things way too long just to keep them the same. I am always so relieved how God works things out and wonder WHY was it so hard to trust.

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  7. Amen Laura! Taking those negative thoughts and putting them up against God's truth! It's our daily challenge isn't it? He really does give us a peace beyond our understanding. Thanks for linking up at CMB! Blessings!!

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  8. Change can be a difficult thing, especially if it is a change we don't want or think we are not ready for! I've had a lot of changes in my life over this past year and I know, without a doubt, that the reason I was able to make it through the changes was because of God. His constant presence in my life strengthened and comforted me more than once! When change occurs I run to Him, trusting that He has a plan even when I don't understand it.

    Blessings, Joan

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Thank you for sharing your thoughts!