Recognizing when God is moving and Partnering with that move of God
Have you ever looked around and seen that the world has changed a lot from the time when you were growing up? It appears pop culture has changed a great deal from when I was young, and even a greater deal from when my parents were children. Even looking at just a few years back, I can see a significant difference in what was socially acceptable compared to today where almost anything goes.
Embracing the Shift of God
I sometimes think about how much our grandparents have witnessed in their lifetime. They witnessed the transition from horse and buggy to us putting a man on the moon. In just one generation, they have seen more technological advances than many generations before them combined. I have been told that 80% of people do not embrace change well. How do you handle change when it happens?
People are creatures of habit and most of us live pretty routine lifestyles. We wake up, eat breakfast, go to work or school, come home, eat dinner, spend some time doing an activity that we enjoy, and go to sleep. We develop a comfort zone, where we live within the confines of things that feel safe and familiar to us. So, when a change in our day to day routine happens, it causes some sort of an emotional response. Some people get angry when their comfort zone is penetrated by things beyond their ability to control, while others become frightened of the unknown situation that they find themselves in. Many people simply wish that things were the way that they used to be and never truly embrace change.
Now, change is all around us and it can be seen even if we are not looking for it. The four seasons of spring, summer, autumn, and winter are a picture of how our environment shifts. We must adjust with the season that we find ourselves in, or we will not thrive in it. If we were to dress in our swimsuits during the winter wishing that it was still summer instead of wearing pants and a coat, we would be foolish. Ecclesiastes tells us that “there is a time for everything and a season for every activity under the sun”. We should be mindful of the “big picture” around us and try to see what God is doing in the season that we are in right now. We also need to be watching for signs of the next season, so we can adapt to the shift before it is upon us.
I love watching those shows of people living on the frontier in Alaska. They are always working at preparing for the season that is ahead of them. During the summer, they know that they only have a few short months to prepare so that they will be ready for the long winter. They are intentional about what they are doing to put themselves in the best position possible for what life has in store for them in the next season. They enjoy the season that they are in, but they are always looking forward and preparing for the shift.
Like those living on the frontier, we too must be anticipating the thing that God has in store for us. We cannot “live in the past” and expect to thrive in the “now”. Adapting to the change around us helps to keep us relevant for the thing that God is doing in the world. We do ourselves and those around us no good if we are stuck in the past. Remember that the Israelites complained about wanting to be back in Egypt while Moses was leading them to the Promised Land? They were unaware of what was ahead of them, and they were focused on being where they had been. If we fail to adapt and embrace change, then opportunity to partner with Heaven will pass us by. Religion says that we must do things a certain way, because we have always done them that certain way. This is why there are so many denominations with differing perspectives on the Christian faith. But what if we were to blow with the wind as the Spirit moves? What if we were to look at today and seek out the thing that God was doing? When a shift happens and we find ourselves in unfamiliar territory we should embrace the fact that God is doing a new thing and be glad to be included in it. Don’t miss out on the great adventure that God has for your life by being stuck in the last season.
God separates the wheat from the chaff. Within our lives there is always a sifting taking place. We must let go of the things that He is taking away and embrace the new things that He is providing for our lives. The one thing that will never change is God’s word. Isaiah 40:8 tells us that “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.” Stand on His word and hold on to His promises. Also, be willing to allow the Spirit to lead you into places that you have not yet experienced. It may be out of our comfort zone, but our comfort zone expands as we are led by the Spirit. I am looking forward to experiencing the new thing that God is doing in our midst.