Finding stability in the midst of change

Posted: Friday, June 06, 2008

Have you ever noticed how everything around us is in a state of change or flux? Yet, many of us do not like change in our lives. I personally like the familiar, and I have a strong desire to keep it that way.

How many persons does it take to change a light bulb? Change!

My wife and I moved from Juneau in August 1999 after serving as pastor at Chapel by the Lake Community Presbyterian Church for 12 years. We returned to Juneau in March 2008 where I am serving again at the Chapel, this time as interim pastor.

Upon arrival in Juneau, we noticed many changes in the community. Every place we look there are new roads and new buildings including a second high school, children are now adults with children, fuel prices increase on a daily basis and fishing regulations are revised.

Our bodies change as we age; one look in the mirror confirms this fact. Our children grow up and move away. Change surrounds us; nothing seems to stay the same.

Therefore, where can we find stability in our lives? The author of the book of Hebrews in the New Testament says, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever" (Heb. 13:8 NIV).

People often ask me where they can find stability in their lives and I point them to this passage. When we go through tough times in our lives, whether it is the loss of a family member, a marital breakup, job loss or stress, financial turmoil, substance abuse, family stress or ill health, where will we find strength? Where will we find a solid rock to stand upon so that when the winds of life blow against us, we will survive?

Again we turn to the scriptures and the words of the one who does not change: the Christ. At the conclusion of the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus shares these words.

"Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on a rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had a foundation on the rock" (Matt. 7:24-25, NIV).

As the world changes around us, there is a place to find strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow. One of my favorite hymns contains the words: "On Christ, the solid rock, I stand: all other ground is sinking sand; all other ground is sinking sand."

If you desire stability in your life, then I encourage you to follow the One who is the same yesterday, today and forever.

• The Rev. Leon Thompson is interim pastor at Chapel by the Lake.

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