How did you think to write all this? What prompted this topic? Just a few questions I’ve heard as we’ve journeyed through this series together. As we conclude this series, I want to share some of the back story with you as well as what “A Better Change” looks like as storms hit in real life.
The simple answer is it started a year and a half ago as an idea for a women’s conference I felt God leading me to develop. It was the first step God illuminated after a period of deep discernment where I’d only been able to take tiny steps of faith through the darkness. Finally God showed me a dimly-lit step to take next, so I threw myself into the assignment.
The idea was to take some of what I use in training at work about managing through change, but look at that change cycle through the lens of Christian faith. I decided to start with a case study of Peter, since he was the first to go through change in a new way with Jesus. I read every book I could find about Peter and the themes of this series began to emerge. I immersed myself in writing a first draft of a book and study guide, but struggled with what really to do with it. I finally felt ready to tackle it again this summer and decided to repackage it as this blog series.
The deeper answer is I needed this lesson in facing change with more hope and less worry
As I dove into this material, I had a sense that a big change must be on the way and God was preparing me. While a bit frightened about what big change might be around the corner, I decided to dig deep and prepare. I took to heart what I learned from Peter about developing a deeper relationship with Jesus, making prayer a daily (throughout the day) habit and cultivating a community.
I practiced these principles on small changes as they came up. Practiced going to prayer first, before my mind could begin to spin out of control with worry. Practiced asking friends to pray with me about certain needs. Practiced opening up within my community and asking for help.
The more I practiced, the more these new tools became my defaults
As I practiced on the small changes, I found my default behavior changing. I didn’t have to remind myself as often to go to prayer first, because I was already praying and discussing the latest challenge with God. I didn’t sink as far into the deep before I reached out and asked for help.
Yes, I still worry and I still cry when life happens. Yes, I still find myself starting to drown, but I don’t sink as far or stay under as long as I used to.
When the big change did hit, I was able to face it with hope and peace
I’ll write more about this at some point in the future, but for now I’ll just say that a big change did indeed hit. It wasn’t as big or as devastating as what many of you may be facing, yet still one that will have long-lasting implications for our family. The day I found out, I remember sitting in my closet crying, throwing a pity party and grieving the ‘what-might-have-beens’. Sometimes we have to do this. We need to grieve endings, but then we need to pick ourselves up and ask God to take us through the change.
I let myself have a good cry and then I got on my knees and prayed. I asked God for guidance in the road ahead, support as we face the next steps and even thanked Him for getting us to this point. Prayer has been my constant companion since then. It’s what sustains me through the tough days and how I listen for God’s guidance as we’re navigating new terrain.
As we’ve started off on this new journey, I actually feel full of hope and peace. I know God has this! He is walking every step of the journey with us and is bigger than anything we’re facing.
This is what “A Better Change” is all about. Had this happened a few years ago, I would have had a completely different reaction. I wouldn’t feel this calm or hopeful. I would have charged forward without solid guidance and started trying to solve it all on my own. I would have worried myself into a frenzy. I would have become so mired in the loss of dreams that I wouldn’t be able to see the new opportunities ahead.
Prepare now for “A Better Change”, so you can face life’s trials with more hope, less worry!
Life is difficult! No doubt about that! We will be faced with hardships and trials, but we can face them with more hope and less worry by deciding to let God carry us through.
Thank you all for allowing me these weeks to explore this topic and write from my heart. I hope it’s been as impactful for you as it has been for me! As we wrap up this series this week, I invite you to continue coming back and see what’s next on the blog! Also, check out my new “About Me” page. Finally tackled a rewrite to share more of my story and why I’m writing this blog.
[callout]This post is part of the “A Better Change” series. For more information on this series and to find related posts, click here: A Better Change Series – Overview[/callout]
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