Some time ago there the How many (insert person or group) does it take to change a light bulb jokes were fairly popular. In my own denominational context one was how may Baptists does it take to change a light bulb? The answer was CHANGE?
I had a professor who once said, “life is a constant adjustment”. I believe he was right. Change is not always easy, especially if it forces us into new territory, removes us from our comfort zone and threatens our familiarity and security. Perhaps Mark Twain’s quip the only person who likes change is a wet baby is more true than we might want to admit. Some people may agree with the Duke of Cambridge who in the late 1800’s reportedly said, any change, at any time, for any reason, is to be deplored. There are others, however who clamor for change, even if they don’t know what they want to change. Change, just for the sake of change, may not be a wise thing at all.
But there is an area of life that change should be continual and that is in our relationship with Jesus. Following Jesus is an ongoing experience and discovery in faith . We never should just coast in a walk with God. In his book Crazy Love Francis Chan writes
Change is not only good; it is critical. If you do the same things today that you did five years ago, you need to closely examine your heart.To repent means to change. You discover areas of your life that are not under God’s control, and you repent, you change (p.175)
The Apostle Paul understood that a relationship with Christ was about change. His testimony in Philippians 3:7-14 was,
7 But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ.
8 More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ,
9 and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith,
10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death;
11 in order that I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.
12 Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus.
13 Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,
14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
What changes does God want to make in your life and mine?