There have been significant changes in my life during the past seven years. While many of these changes were unexpected and not what I might have chosen for myself, I have tried to face them with an attitude of acceptance. While I’m not cetain it is possible to “master” change, I do believe it is possible to focus on positives. As a Christian I know there is a plan for my life and allowing God to work that plan will provide a fulfilling life.
While going through changes it has been necessary to give up on some things. Cliches frequently come to mind, “it is impossible to reach for the future while holding on to the past.” They may be corny, but they can provide strength. As I focus on the future I wonder if the lessons learned will be retained. George Carlin had a skit about “stuff” and the nature of people to acquire stuff to overflow their space, which would lead to more space – then acquisition of stuff to fill it. A vicious cycle! One I want to overcome.
Giving up a spacious home, pairing down material possessions to top priorities, and making essentials the financial requirement – all lessons I was forced into. However forced those lessons, not only were they valuable, but they led to happiness. Focusing on NECESSITIES to achieve joy and fulfillment. Last week at church the sermon was on John 4: 6-42 – where Jesus offers a Samarian woman three things – the living water, salvation, and God’s work. By accepting what is offered we can be fulfilled – a lesson I’m still learning.
There is an email and Facebook post that talks about wishing you “enough.” Enough wisdom, health, happiness . . . So I continue to learn and understand necessities and enough. What do I need? What is enough? Recently heard a message – “What if you wake up with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?” After hearing this, I have tried to remember to thank God every night for the phenominal blessings He has bestowed. It is also my prayer that I will continue to utilize these blessings to achieve fulfillment and recognize that I am ENOUGH. I hope each of you are also blessed with enough.
Some days the challenge of change is rather exciting. Hmmmm . . . maybe I am starting to embrace this whole “spirit of change!” Not likely, but its a wonderful thought.
The changes I get excited about typically have something to do with electronics or computers. My father instilled a love for gadgets and toys early in life. In 1978 he and I built a Heath Zenith kit computer in the basement. It was so exciting and both of us couldn’t wait to boot it up the first time. We put the boot disk in the 5-1/4 drive and were thrilled to see the C:> on the screen. That initial green screen was the catalyst for my electronic love affair.
Tonight I am writing on a combination screen and keyboard that is almost the same size as the boot disk for the Heath Zenith. The program I use is stored in the cloud and the information is stored on the internet. The storage on this minuscule system may be larger than the entire main frame when I went to college. The electronics available keep me excited about the possibilities. People are stunned that I work on computers then come home and spend my evenings on them as well. What we can accomplish with the aid of electronics now is mind blowing. Well, when they are working. I won’t mention how I feel about electronics when they decide NOT to work.
So with just fourteen days until Christmas, I hope your online shopping is successful. If you have an electronic fanatic on your list – best of luck! Here are a couple of top gadget lists:
A few weeks ago our office added a new employee who will be working with me in the Record’s Center. Working with new people can be a real challenge because there is always a question about how these relationships will work out. In this economy it isn’t like you can just walk away from a job because you don’t enjoy working with someone. I’m trying to keep in mind that she left a good job and is probably just as concerned about how she will fit in.
Sometimes in life, there is no Plan B, we simply have to go with the flow. Really hate dumb sayings like “go with the flow.” But frequently they do sum up exactly what we have to deal with in life. It’s this managing changes that I have always struggled with in my life. During the last several years, I have tried to learn to accept the changes and understand how to “go with the flow” more willingly.
During devotional reading I was thinking about change in my life and how I could better accept, not just manage, these changes. After praying for guidance, I decided to let the Bible open and read these scriptures in hope that they would confirm my actions. The Bible opened to the book of Ruth. One of my favorite books, and one that I typically read at least annually. I couldn’t imagine how this was supposed to help guide me through acceptance of change but thought I should just keep my mind open to any message.
The book of Ruth celebrates a young woman who remained devoted to her mother-in-law despite the loss of all the men in their lives, and her MILs insistence that her daughter’s in law go back to their families. God blessed Ruth by providing for their needs as Ruth accepted her MILs God and traditions – forsaking all she knew. Ruth’s acceptance of all these changes opened her to receive God’s grace and reward. In all the years that I’ve read this, I’ve never thought about all the changes that Ruth had to accept, leaving her family to be married, the death of her husband, leaving the home she and her husband created to follow her MIL back to her family, her fellow sister in laws leaving her to head back to their families – leaving her alone with her MIL, giving up the religion and tradition that she grew up with to accept her MILs God, accepting that following her MILs instructions would provide their needs, etc. She took great risks and made selfless decisions. It truly appears as though she was going with the flow as all these changes were coming at her.
My mother recently told me that every time she reads scripture she gets something different from it. Recognizing how others have coped with change should help me to be more accepting. Maybe I am beginning to accept change more readily. Well at least I’m making an ATTEMPT to be more accepting right? There certainly are many individuals who are dealing with less pleasant changes than the ones I’ve had to accept.