Navigating Change at Christmas, trusting God’s plan
I have encountered several recent changes in my life, family and work. The addition of my new husband, step children and grand babies was a wonderful change in our family. Although wonderful, it has been a time of adjustment and transition; we are all learning our new life together. Other changes I have experienced, or those I know have encountered, can also be challenging, such as changing or losing a job, a family member encounters a life-changing illness or gets cancer, losing a spouse, child or parent. Sometimes, we think we know the road map for our life, and God suddenly reveals that he has a different plan.
Think about Mary and Joseph. Those two young people had a huge shift in their plans and lives when God began to reveal to them they were chosen for a very special task in the world, to birth and raise Jesus. Here was a young couple, engaged to be married with dreams for their lives together, and suddenly they were told a very special baby was on its way, the son of God.
Luke 1 tells us that, at first, Mary is greatly troubled by the news and had questions. She did not have a grid or any understanding of the news she received, as no one else had been chosen to carry the Son of God. We can all learn from her ultimate response. Luke recounts her response to the news with, “I am the Lord’s servant, may it be to me as you have said.” Luke states Mary’s response, “My soul glorifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior.” (NIV) When the unexpected came, Mary humbled herself, agreed with God’s plan even though she did not understand and worshiped God in her transition. I love that about her! She lived Proverbs 3:5 which states, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge him and he will direct your path.” (NIV) She simply trusted God and his goodness.
Matthew 1 tells us Joseph first thought of ending the relationship with Mary, but after an angel appeared to him in a dream, and explained God’s plan, he changed his mind. Matthew says, “When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife.” (NIV)
Transition is defined as the process of changing from one state or condition to another. I have often felt like my own transitions make me feel upside down. God’s purpose in our lives is to conform us to his image. In our day-to-day walk, he wants us to be his representatives here on earth of his kindness, love, goodness, faithfulness and peace. He is all about changing us to be more like him and, often times, uses change or transition as a tool to shape us.We can tell from the Christmas story, that change might not seem like a good thing at first, but, ultimately, it can be our friend and birth something new in us, a better version of who we are, will affect the world around us. Mary and Joseph were chosen for special purposes. They embraced the plan and change, and simply trusted God.
Change has been around for more than 2,000 years and is here to stay. God is looking for people that will say “yes” to Him and make a difference in the world. What change has happened in your life since the last few holiday seasons? What change do you need to wrap your arms around? I wonder what special task God has chosen you for?
I challenge you to have the same attitude as Mary and Joseph. Simply say “yes” to God’s plan, trust Him and grow from your changes. In that journey, our faith is upgraded, we can be conformed to God’s image, and we discover it’s a wonderful life.
Kathleen Maxwell-Rambie is a native to the Texas Hill Country, a writer and speaker. She is passionate about helping people discover their value and worth, and God’s love, You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit her blog at www.themaxwellminutes.