Thursday, November 1, 2007

Change Like Shifting Shadows

By Rita Shimniok

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” James 1:17

Change is a part of life. Each day I awake, I am changed, and even though it may not always be apparent on the outside, I can see that God is continually at work in me, changing my heart and drawing me closer towards Him. Every single one of us is a work in progress.

With the leaves changing colors on the trees around us I am reminded of the verse from Ecclesiastes: “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.” When I think back through my life and all of the changes I have incurred, I can see all the seasons I have been through. There was a season of ignorance, a season of indifference, a season of rebellion, season of longing and searching, season of desiring to change with continual failure, and finally, a season of growth in Christ.

It is my last and current season in which I have found true joy in my heart as I have come to know the Lord on a much more personal level. Life has been somewhat unpredictable, and as I have grown in Christ I have learned how to handle change with a sense of calmness and reliance upon God. Prayer plays an important role in my life when going through change of any kind that may be stressful.

About a year ago a huge change in our lives was that of switching to a different church. It was a most difficult decision, in the making for more than a year. We had been married in our church, and had been active for more than 18 years. Our little church was family. My husband and I both needed spiritual feeding through a style of worship that allowed the Holy Spirit to move us through praise songs and time for reflection. As we grew in Christ we became more firm in the values set forth in the bible. We truly believe that the pages of the bible were God inspired, God breathed. Our former church was not always teaching in this manner, and it caused inward struggle and even frustration at times. The word of God never changes, through generations, and 100s of years, God is the same today, yesterday and tomorrow. Gods’ Word was written to a people of a certain time in earth’s existence. As modern day Christians we need to remember that the Word was not written to us, but for us. Keep this in mind and it will make a difference in your bible study.

Thus we began calling Blackhawk our home, moving from a church of approximately 200 in Sunday attendance to one of nearly 3,000 was a monumental step. God gave us so many signs that this church was where we belonged, however, and we have begun the process of getting to know others through involvement and small groups. Each and every Sunday I am lifted up, and as many of you may know – inspired as well and the inspiration often finds its way into my Selah devotionals and scrapbook pages.

This past Sunday was the start of yet another change in our lives. We said good-bye to the building in which our worship services have been held. On November 4th we say hello to a newly built place of worship and gathering, and I will just use the word HUGE to describe it. Finding our way around may seem daunting at first. I admit, I SO look forward to LEAD Bible Study meeting on Wednesday nights and having a table on which to lay our bibles in a spacious room, versus eleven women cramming into a cozy, oversized storage room used as an office for three. The new building will be such a blessing for the church staff, who has endured major growth pains and kept scrunching together until there was no more room to scrunch. We are excited about the move and potential growth as more people are reached for the kingdom. Abby has been counting down the days all week, excitedly telling me Sunday is the day we go to our new church building. I love that my children are excited to go to worship. It gives my heart and soul such joy.

Change is constant in our lives. Selah began as a devotional blog, and today it fledges as its own web-site. This change is a huge step of faith. So much time and energy has gone into this project, because God gave two followers a vision who have carried it through, despite a year of trials and tribulations. This is an exciting time for all of us who have been a part of the Selah team. We pray that Selah will bear fruit for the kingdom. This post was originally for the blog. It has become routine for me to post on Thursday mornings, and since I had written this for today I thought I would share it here. Selah has gone live this morning - please check it out!

Change is often exciting and wonderful, but there are changes that cause us to weep as well. Difficult times of change remind us how temporal we are, for this life, too, shall pass. When you are going through times of change, good or bad, always keep in mind that which does not change, and that is the Lord, our God.

My prayer for you today:
Lord, we know that change is a part of life. As we go through the seasons of our life help us to remember that there is a time for everything. A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, and a time to tear down and a time to build. As we lose those we hold dear, or face new situations and perhaps new places, help us to realize that you are in control Lord, and that you alone are powerful, and mighty, and never changing. You alone are our Rock and our refuge, help us to stand firm on our faith and seek to share the love of your Truth to the world. Amen.

No comments: