Seasons come, seasons go.
Change is incessant.
The only unchanging thing in life is change itself.
They may seem like trite, clichéd statements, but over these past few months, they have slapped me in the face, up close and personal. Our family has moved three cities, packed up and left our furniture in storage, currently live out of three suitcases and two holdalls, with no income, and no home to call our own. I've struggled with the inability to make comprehensive plans (which, for an inveterate organiser, is anathema!). I've questioned God's seemingly erratic leading. I've wondered what our future holds.
And I have no answers.
But here’s the one fact that has continually encouraged and strengthened me: our God never changes. I'm learning to appreciate this anew in this season of change. We worship an unchanging God. He loves us regardless of our vacillating faith, crippling fears, and imperfect obedience. He is the same. He is constant. And He is in complete control. My view of Him may falter; I may blame Him when I ought to be thanking Him; but that doesn't change who He is. He remains – Yahweh – the all-powerful, all-knowing, ever-present, eternal One.
What a comfort for souls that are being tossed up and down by life's stormy waves.
I'd like to share some of the lessons that I'm learning through these seasons of change.
Personality: Seasons of change help mould my character, emptying the selfishness and pride and filling me with love and compassion. These struggles are good because they chisel away at my rock-like heart until the image of Christ is revealed.
To my surprise, I found having to live on the kindness and generosity of others to be a humbling experience. I've always enjoyed being the magnanimous benefactor; reality began to pinch my ego when I found myself at the receiving end. Crucifying the self then became a daily challenge, if not an hourly one!
Priority: Seasons of change show me who I really am – what my true priorities are and where my allegiance lies. I'd always believed that I wasn't a materialistic person – I was never one for the latest fads in fashion or furniture; my house always looked homely, never glamorously styled with matching décor. My choice in clothes can only be described as comfortable, never trendy. Hence the misguided, self-righteous belief mentioned above.
It was a rude shock to suddenly find myself bereft of my bookcases and books. I actually miss them, and my greatest fear is that the moving guys will either break the cases or destroy the books (I have an over-active imagination that specialises in worst-case scenarios!). As ridiculous as that example may seem, it showed me that I could never have responded as Job did after he lost everything. “The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord,” he says in Job 1:21.
Perspective: As I said at the beginning, seasons come and go. They aren't permanent; that is their very nature. I'm learning to step back and see the big picture. I've begun to appreciate the small things, value the simple things and be grateful for everything. I am able to enjoy my toddler's growing vocabulary and hilarious mannerisms more today than I did before. What I saw as a chore, is now fun. I'm realising that I can live without a lot of “stuff”. I'm learning to trust God and not make my own plans. After all, since He knows what the future holds, why worry?
As I learn to see God like I've never seen Him before, I'm finally beginning to understand that this life on earth is not about me at all. When we see God in even a fraction of His splendour, it can only humble us and bring us to our knees. For this awesome High King longs for us, sings over us, and calls us His beloved children! What a privilege.
The well-known words from a familiar song remind of what remains true in this fleeting, inconstant life.
Your promises remain
Forever and ever
You won't fade away
You never, You never change
You're unchanging God
You will never change
You're unchanging God
Photo Credit : Annie Spratt