The more they stay the same. Or so the old saying goes. Somedays, it is hard to believe that. I have been trying desperately to keep the days from flying away from me. I just want one day to last a little longer. My life is not perfect-no, it is far from it. But I know enough to know how blessed I am. I know that tomorrow my sweet children will not be as little, as precocious, as darling, as they are today. And I hate that. I want to be in control-even though I know in my heart that I would be terrible at it. Because I want sameness, and I can't find it.
I establish routines, and plans, schedules and dates, but in the end, every day will be different. I am destined in some ways to carry on exactly as every generation before me: Eating. Sleeping. Clothing. Schooling. Trying very anxiously to make the minutes count. Without counting the minutes. It is an impossible task. And sometimes it makes me angry. I want (or I think I want) things to stay the same. My life has been full of changes I can't control. Some of the changes are good: gaining a new sibling or child, taking hold of opportunities to teach or serve, finishing projects to improve my life. Other changes are mixed bags: moving, graduating, choices that lead through an open door, but close others. I strive to be gracious, to accept all things as being for my good, because I do try so hard to love Him. But sometimes it just makes me so tired.
And I think that is why so often I don't understand God. In a world where EVERYTHING changes: from the moment we are conceived we begin to move towards our end, He never, ever changes.
"Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today and forever." Hebrews 13:8 NIV
I get frustrated because I can't reconcile His constant, immovable, sameness with my continually shifting circumstances. How can He understand my heart when I can't even find the time to catch my breath in this whirlwind of shifting sand? But He does, and I know that.
I was putting up my Christmas decorations a few days ago. As I placed some decorations on a shelf, I asked myself, "Why do I do this every year?" In a few short weeks I will be taking these same decorations down, packing them away for another 11 months. I will be telling myself how eager I am for the cleanness of the new year, happy to have my house back to "normal". But a little part of me will be sad. Sad that even though Christmas can be a little crazy, that I like the purpose it brings. That I don't want it to change, because even though I know that every year will bring a Christmas, that the next one won't be the same. It might be better, but I can't know that. And sometimes that makes me fearful.
And that is true about most of life. It will probably get better-if in no other sense that it will draw me closer to the Father. But I will tell you the reason that I like change the least: it means I am not where I am supposed to be. I want to feel that I have "arrived" and that will never be true. On the other hand, the One who never changes doesn't need to change. He has arrived.
" In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
He was with God in the beginning. The Word became flesh and made
His dwelling among us."
John 1:1-2 NIV
He has been perfect from the dawn of time, and He will never cease to be. I need to change, He doesn't. Every single quickly altering circumstance that passes in my life is for one reason: to make me more like Him. He came to allow me the privilege of becoming, of changing, to be more like Him. He is the one orchestrating every single change that happens. And I need to quit trying to hold on. I don't want to want to stay the same. I want to want to change. I want to be more like Him. And the unchanging part will probably come last. Because the more things change, the more He stays the same. I am glad that He came, as a Baby, but still perfect, full of grace (Thank God!) and truth. He lived that way, He died that way, and He rose that way. He lives in my heart that way, and God willing, and I know He is, I will live through each and every change-small or life-altering- that comes my way and He will make me more like Him. And that is a change I need.