Three Things I Realized About Change

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I realized recently that there is something constant about change. That change happens constantly.

Let me explain. Exactly five years ago, I was in a situation that I had to make critical life decisions, very similar to where I am right now. I remember wishing for that magical dagger I can use to bring me back to certain points in my life especially during those times that I had to make a difficult decision – most especially when I made a wrong decision. Let’s just say this was my almost comical, yet fantasy-filled wishful response after watching “The Prince of Persia”, the movie me and my wife watched just before the start of the new school year five years ago. The truth is, as I was then, I am still really wishing for that dagger, simply because, after five years, nothing has changed. Due to many changes in our lives, we have to make difficult decisions right now.

In 2010, big or small, whether we wanted it or not, many changes affected us in so many ways. Like my father’s passing away unexpectedly; team members returning to their own country for good; my sister’s plan to get married and live in the US for good which will mean that my mom will live on her own; Lois, my eldest becoming a teen-ager and a high school neophyte; our rented apartment contract expiring in a couple of months.

Questions hounded me all day long and even when it is time to rest at night. Should we transfer to a new house? Where will my daughter get his secondary education? Can we still handle the ministry that we have lesser workers than before? Who should I put in-charge of our major ministries?

Honestly, I am just afraid – afraid to make a bad decision. The “what ifs” clog my mind.

What if the owner did not renew contract with us and we couldn’t find a new house to rent, where will we live? What if the person I tapped as the new ministry leader was not really capable? What if the new project we just started was not part of God’s direction for our team?

I just want to do it perfectly.

I was reminded then of God’s call for Abraham in Genesis 12 (he was still known as Abram that time). Abraham was called to leave his country and go to a land that God will show him. How difficult that change and decision must be for Abraham. It wasn’t easy to leave his hometown and go to a new place he has no knowledge of yet because God will only show him where as he goes. But the Bible didn’t mention of any dagger in Abraham’s possession. Actually he had one (the one he wanted to use when God asked Abraham to offer Isaac to Him), but he never got to use it because he had something way better than any daggers. That is his faith in His God.

During the course of his life, filled with many changes and challenges, Abraham made many mistakes. What made him succeed is that kept on moving forward, not letting the setbacks and challenges hinder him from reaching his goals.

I realized that I don’t have to go back to the past to change my mistakes.

I just have to keep moving forward. Yes, I will make mistakes (and I need to learn from them), but God assures me that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28 NIV). He will also show me His direction as I seek Him and follow Him in faith, just like when Abraham obeyed Him and left his country – He showed Abraham where to go as he went.

I realized that since change is constant, I will never be able to do it perfectly.

I will make mistakes along the way. Many times I will fall flat on my face just like what I have experienced many times in the past. The good news is God will always be there. He promised to be with us until the end of the age. He will never leave us nor forsake us. God corrects and rebukes us, but He also encourages and strengthens us so we can continue with the journey He has called us to undertake.

Changes and decisions will always be a part of our lives, but with God leading the way what else do we need. What are we afraid of? Truly, the Apostle Paul was perfectly right when he said, “If God is for us, who can be against us? No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.” (Romans 8:31, 37 NIV)

For More On Change: CLICK HERE

Joshua began full-time church ministry in 1993, two years after responding to God’s challenge to start a youth ministry in his local church in Makati, a ministry that has existed up to now. He finished a degree in Aeronautical Engineering because he originally wanted to become a pilot, but a few months before graduating, he heard God calling him to full-time ministry. Right after graduation from college, he started serving on the pastoral staff of his local church and at the same time as a youth pastor. He did this for 11 years, spending most of his time coordinating evangelistic meetings, camps, youth concerts, and local mission trips and preaching. Then in 2004, he started a ministry called Youth Mobilization (YM). He saw how God powerfully used the youth both in local ministry and in cross-cultural missions, and how missions transformed both the youth and their church. So together with a friend and a couple of his young people, they started Youth Mobilization. For 7 years now, they have been involved in empowering churches by equipping and training young people and by giving them opportunities to experience dynamic missions. In 1994, Joshua married his best friend and co-worker in the Lord, Anne, who is in-charge of YM’s training department. God has blessed them with two beautiful children, Lois (born in 1998) and Josiah (born in 2001). FB group – Youth Mobilization www.youthmobilization.blogspot

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