How do we conform to a new environment, job, church, or relationship? Change usually imposes a shadow of fear as we travel the unknown. However, God is our travel companion, and God helps us avoid spiritual collisions.
A NEED FOR CHANGE
My twenty-four-year-old son desperately needed a different car to commute in his traffic-driven city, Los Angeles. His 1997 car was living its last days held with duct tape, rigged wires, and prayer. The logical solution was to give him my mint-condition, four-wheel drive, and payment free awesome Jeep. Can you sense my attachment?
ADJUSTING TO CHANGE
My husband bought me a new Honda, and he brought it home last week. Instead of expressing excitement, the car intimidated me. I sat in the car while my husband watched from the driveway. It had a pushbutton start, voice control, and an instrument panel that NASA would be proud to adopt for spacecraft. To make matters worse, the toxic smell of “new” was making me nauseous. “Don’t roll down the windows,” he cautioned me as I buckled my seatbelt.
“Why?” I asked?
“The tinted windows need a couple of days to adhere,” he replied.
I needed a couple of days to adhere, I thought. I didn’t mean to sound ungrateful, but I adjust to change slowly.
FRUSTRATED WITH CHANGE
My first trip was a short ride to the gym. After my workout, I proceeded to the parking lot, and I remembered, No key needed to unlock the door. The car wouldn’t open. “Okay buster, now what?” I asked Mr. Computer on wheels. The car looked different–a bit dirty. Good grief, it was the wrong car! I was relieved no one was watching; I casually walked to my car and slid into the seat.
I pushed the engine button, but it wouldn’t start. The dashboard lit up, “To start engine: Brake + Push.”
I kept pushing the brake, and nothing happened. It was obvious we weren’t communicating. I grabbed the manual and realized I was pushing the parking brake instead of the regular brake. When I returned home, I started reading the manual. It was time to go beyond introduction and get acquainted.
REASONS FOR CHANGE
Isn’t that how we sometimes approach God? We become Christians, make God’s acquaintance, and we try to live our lives without reading His Word—our spiritual manual. God wants to show us how to start each day and help us recognize Him throughout each lot in life. He wants to teach us how to navigate according to His plan.
As I read the vehicle manual, I realized the car had front airbags, side airbags, and ceiling airbags continuously monitored by an electronic control. It had weight sensors, seat position sensors, rollover sensors, and impact sensors. Since my seat was close to the steering wheel to accommodate for my shortness, the sensor would tell the airbag to deploy with less force in the event of a collision. I was amazed by all this protection, and that’s when it hit me—no, not the airbag.
God’s loving sensors continuously monitor our hearts, and God deploys the perfect form of love for each daily challenge. Sometimes, it’s tough love, sometimes it’s gentle assurance, sometimes it’s quiet strength, sometimes it’s needed conviction, but it’s always love.
I received my needed conviction, so instead of whining, I offered God a repentant heart with a prayer of gratitude. Sometimes, we think it’s the big things that cause us to collide with God’s will, but my ingratitude and unwillingness to change led me toward a spiritual collision.
Whether we face minor adjustments or a huge life changes, the effects of an unyielding heart is the same—it damages our relationship with God. But God helps us avoid spiritual collisions by deploying the right form of love for each circumstance.
My Honda and I are more acquainted, and it’s becoming a friend. After all, It brought me closer to the Lord, and isn’t that the sign of a true friend?
YOUR “CHANGE” STORY
When did God deploy His amazing love when you faced change? It’s time to brag about our amazing God in the comment box below.
The New King James Version. (1982). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.