by Emily Conrad
Change isn’t my favorite, and I don’t mean only bad changes.
Even a good change can leave me feeling unsettled and apprehensive.
Maybe the thoughts that tempt me will sound familiar to you, too.
Is this new thing as good as I think it’ll be? Am I navigating these uncharted waters correctly? I could fail. I could fail spectacularly.
With thoughts like those, it’s no wonder new things that come by change become extra scary.
But there’s another way.
Philippians 4:8 tells us to fix our minds on whatever is true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, and admirable.
You know what those words could all describe?
Actually, it’s more of a Who: God.
That entire reel of spiraling thoughts I wrote out above is I-focused. Every sentence used the pronoun at least once.
Since I’m a flawed human in need of God’s rescue, of course I’m unsettled when I think and act like successfully adjusting to change depends on me.
But when I set my mind on the perfect God who can do all things, peace follows.
Is this new thing good? becomes God is working all things for good (see Romans 8:28).
Am I navigating these waters correctly? becomes God is with me and will lead me, even through these waters (see Isaiah 43:2).
I could fail becomes I am able to do all things through the one who strengthens me (Philippians 4:13, NET)
I could fail spectacularly becomes There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1, NET).
And once I start on Scripture like this, more and more truths come to mind. They come in bits and pieces, phrases committed to memory from childhood church activities and personal study, but quick searches lead me to the full verses and passages, which in turn plant life-giving truth to combat all my negative thoughts:
That as I follow God, I have nothing to fear–certainly the changes I face are no match for the power of my Lord.
Look, the Lord’s hand is not too weak to deliver you;
his ear is not too deaf to hear you. Isaiah 59:1, NET
These are uncertain times. Like me, you might face a mix of changes, some good, some challenging. Or, yours might seem to skew one way or the other.
If you feel unsettled and anxious, join me in focusing not on what you can do for yourself, but rather on what our God is doing on our behalf as we draw close to Him.
Don’t be afraid, for I am with you!
When we’ve put our faith in Jesus, no matter the uncertainties and changes we face, we remain secure in His unchanging love.
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Butterfly on shoe photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash
Woman holding butterfly photo by Reign Abarintos on Unsplash
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I don't like change either! Even good changes, like you mentioned. The first thing that runs through my mind when a good thing happens is, "I hope I don't mess this up!"
But that's what the enemy wants us to think. Thank you for another thought-provoking blog! 🙂
Yes, Cheryll, the same thought occurs to me! Thanks for the reminder to examine the source of our thoughts–and, as always, for reading 🙂
Love the idea of re-setting our mindset so that questions and insecurities are replaced by Scripture and truth. I like to think about people from the Bible who faced big changes like Abraham, whom God commanded to leave all he'd known behind, Moses, whom God gave a brand new job, and even Hosea, whom God commanded to turn his own life upside down. God used all that change to do amazing things!
So true, Katie! And wow, how about all the changes Joseph went through on his way to becoming 2nd in command to Pharaoh. Great point!
…join me in focusing not on what you can do for yourself, but rather on what our God is doing on our behalf as we draw close to Him.
Agreed! As always, no better time to re-adjust our perspectives, turn them back to the Lord.
Thanks for the reminder! It's so easy to become anxious during these times, but our God is unsurprisable!
Great point, Mary–there's never a time when it's bad to focus more wholly on the Lord!
Unsurprisable! I love that, Carol! Thanks for reading!