The Challenge of Change and Maintaining Affection for Christ.
There are many among us that absolutely do not handle change very well. While some may thrive on the changing landscape, most are happy to just enjoy the same day in and day out routine. But if we pull back the layers as to why change wrecks us, we can usually accredit it to the fact that we like to be in control. Control of schedules, control of outcomes, control of church, control of people we have in our lives, control of sickness just to name a few.
We all know control is just a theoretical thought. We control almost nothing in the grand scheme of things. People, work, deadlines, health, kids, the future…We really don’t control anything. We do however control our response.
Our response to change can come across as frustration that the direction we were hoping for didn’t happen as we wanted. Our response can come across as fear because of the lack of preparation. Our response can come across as not giving proper care and concern to the situation. Which is why we struggle.
While I am not saying we can prepare for every situation, we can certainly practice affection toward Christ to promote the proper response to unseen change. As we look around at the varying changes that are upon us, what we see is a result of proper affections toward Christ, or lack of affections toward Christ. Our knees are buckling under the weight of new things that have changed the very way in which we shop, live, deal with friends, and even worship. Nothing is left unaffected by this pandemic.
So what can we do? Sorry to say, there is no formula to get us back, no three step process to restore love for Jesus. But we do live in a special moment in time that we have more time than we can remember to begin the process.
In Matt 7:7-11, Jesus says this…
7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. 9 Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!”
Somewhere somehow, we began to believe that God hides himself from us. Like we have to jump through a bunch of hoops to get him to love us, or hear us, of help us.
What if preparation for change in the most difficult situations actually come down to the basic thing Jesus told us to do? Odd, I know. But what if our affections turn back if we simply ask, actually seek, genuinely knock?
My prayer as of late start simply with this statement. “God, I want to love you, I want to enjoy you, I want to you to be primary and capture my affection, but I struggle in how to do this. Will you help me, and help my unbelief? Not once has he responded with “well Jeff, you weren’t asking for this when you were afraid were you? You weren’t all affectionate when your anger burned were you? You weren’t really looking for me the other day when your fear over came you were you?
He loves us church. He desires our love. Ask him to help you. You’ll not be disappointed. Trust me, I know.
Pray for each other.
I love ya’ll