Change is Hard

Knowledge and trust in the Almighty God. Knowing God and trusting God are guaranteed to prevail against fear and its sidekick, resistance – two of the harshest critics of any inclination to change.

By Amy Sparkman

Categories: Guidance, New Year/Change

Change is hard. Change is exhilarating! The hard part is letting go. The exhilarating part is the heart-pounding promise of what lies ahead. 

In some respects, we can't avoid change: Time marches on, people come and go in our lives, stuff happens that we can't control. But in many instances, we get to choose whether or not to move from our current position—whether or not to purposefully alter our course. 

Change is inevitable, even inexorable. Change is endemic to news – it makes the news; it is the news; it forces the viewer to keep up with the news. With every advance in cyber-technology, the "change factor" speeds up in a relentless effort to flesh out the full story and to keep the public informed. It is said that today's young people will change their careers at least 10 times during their lifetime. The demand to be flexible and to keep up with the times is incessant. But inevitable, inexorable, endemic and incessant do not make change easy.

Is there anything that does? Absolutely. Knowledge and trust in the Almighty God. Knowing God and trusting God are guaranteed to prevail against fear and its sidekick, resistance – two of the harshest critics of any inclination to change. 

To know God is to understand several spiritual facts:

  • There is only one God: "I am the Lord, and there is none else, there is no God beside me" (Isaiah 45:5).
  • God is the only Creator; God's creation, man and the universe, is the image and likeness of God's nature, which is all and only good. (Gen 1:1-31).
  • There is nothing apart from God: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God….All things were made by him, and without him was not any thing made that was made" (John 1:1, 3).
  • The contract between God and man is forever: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" (Exodus 20:3).

This God-centered knowledge is the essence of our identity, our being, and our life. 

The first of the Ten Commandments is a riveting reminder of our inseparable relationship to God. It's a declaration that God is the only One, and it's a demand that each of us has, knows and trusts the one, only God. The more deeply we commit ourselves to God, to drawing close to God, to turning to God for guidance in our day-to-day affairs, the more solidly we establish our trust in God's constant presence and power.

In the face of such solid spiritual conviction, fear and resistance melt away. How? Through logical and persistent spiritual reasoning.

Change doesn't need to feel scary. Our lives are always in God's hands. He governs each step. We trust that. And so we move. We also trust that God is leading us, guiding us, in good directions. And so we always move forward. Even if change is heading in a direction that seems backwards or sideways, we trust that God is revealing something unexpected in order to move us forward in a better way than we were planning. 

Change doesn't deny or denigrate the past. In fact, change honors where we've come from; it adds dimension to where we're going and depth to why we're going there. The past is a building block, a launch pad, a learning device for whatever comes next, and next, and next. The past is rich with experiences worthy of note, but not of regret because we are here today, ready to move on from "then" to "now."

Change isn't enervating – it's refreshing! It forces us to strip away the old, which reveals the new. It often leads to a healthy evaluation of our selves, our interactions, our life course. Where are we headed? Is it where we want to be going? How might we do things differently? 

Some of the best family discussions we've had have been about an impending change. What starts out as a change in circumstance invariably ends with a change of heart – a changed way of seeing a new horizon. The turn of the calendar year marks a perfect time to reflect on the myriad aspects of change. The New Year inspires closure as well as expectancy and opportunity. It's an invitation to do things in a new way. We can start a new venture. We can be more of who we really want to be. We can grow. 

An invaluable lesson for our children to learn is to embrace change—to expect it, look forward to it, and move through it with meekness and might, with the grace of God. When we embrace someone, we're not clinging; we're expressing love. We're surrounding the person with arms of support and joy. We're sharing mutual gratitude. When we embrace change, we express the same qualities – love, support, gratitude – for Life's unfolding adventure, for Love's companionship, for Soul's inspired creativity, for Spirit's palpable presence, for the purity and persistence of Truth, for the intelligence and oneness of Mind, for the balance and integrity of Principle. 

Assured of God's embrace around us all, we can greet the New Year and all the change that's sure to come with a knowing, trusting smile of welcome!