Handling change: we all must do it; I used to hate it. I had a way and a plan and for the most part I preferred when things went the way I anticipated. Anytime my life plan got derailed, I had it out with God, the people around me, and myself. “Why would God let this happen? Why are the people I love not seeing this the way I am? Dana, why are you being so ridiculous? ”
Over the years I have had to face change in multiple areas of my life. Some were big changes and some were small and my reaction to those changes was all over the place. Emotions ran high and I was always leaping to the worst case scenario. I’ve come to realize that the root of all of that emotion and negativity was fear. In the book “Girl Meets Change” by Kristen Strong she says, “change is not something to be feared but something to be received as a blessing from God who works through it, not in spite of it.” Wow! I could read that one line over and over. Only with the help of Christ and my loving, patient husband, did I figure out how to take fear out the equation and replace it with a little something called grace. That grace led me to realize how important the following 3 concepts are:
God is on the throne. During times of change and uncertainty, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, resistant, and isolated. In times like these, I would normally try to control everything I can to keep some normalcy in my life. Have you done this? I often forgot that God is still in control and knows the ultimate outcome. I spent my time worrying, calculating, and reworking the “plans.” Despite all you feel you need to do, set that aside and immerse yourself in God’s word. Read your Bible, post Bible verses everywhere you look journal your prayers and cry out to God. Talk to Him. Grow your relationship with Him. Thank Him. List everything you have to be thankful for, all that He has provided, and all the He promises.
Community is everything. Don’t take your stress out on the people you love and don’t isolate yourself from them. When your flesh takes over during times of change, it can be our instinct to run from the people that we need the most. Your tribe, your people, you need them. Dive into those relationships, dig deep, love hard. In Girl Meets Change, Kristen also says, “Quite often, my ability to accept and thrive through change is directly proportional to the state of my near and dear friendships.” I agree with this wholeheartedly.
Embrace the change. Whatever it may be. Resistance will be your biggest enemy. This is the area where I need grace the most. It’s so easy to get a bad attitude when dealing with change because it’s difficult and messy and it turns your world upside-down. Thankfully, every day is a chance to start over. In the trenches of change, the joy might not always come naturally, but if you seek it out, you will find it! Whether its your home, a friend, the sunshine, or a trip to Target– find something that brings you joy! Give yourself grace as you learn.
Everything is constantly changing. It’s so easy to let my fear of change decide my actions. I feel that God gives us opportunities to learn from the big, scary, life-altering changes He often throws our way. When I get on the other side of that big change, I see why it happened and what God was trying to show me through it all. I can’t ask for much more than that.
Are there areas in your life where you could use a little more grace and a little less change. Girl, I get it! Amanda and Marrissa get it, too. I’m so glad to have been able to share a bit of my heart with you this month. Head over to my blog if you wanna read on…