Northeastern District 6
Church of God by Faith, Inc.
While listentng to the teaching
THE CHALLENGE OF CHANGE
Change challenges our existing categories. In order to change we must reorder our thought processes and see the same things in new ways.
The idea that the Messiah would suffer and serve and live in poverty and humility – that was unthinkable for Jewish people prior to the Christ’s incarnation.
They would never have imagined that the Messiah would be born in obscurity and die a criminal’s death. This was out of their box.
Jesus was an innovator, a change-agent. So is every effective leader in this 21st century that we’re now living in .
When we contemplate change, we must first consider the anchor that provide stability in a changing environment. Abraham believed in the Lord, and that security allowed him to pursue revolutionary change.
Similarly, the Christian life is an ongoing process of change and internal revolution, grounded in the belief that this process is reforming us to become more Christ-like.
Not with standing, this process should not be thought of as “pain free.” God invites us to do something counter-intuitive:
Go through the pain and not around it. He often uses the painful experiences of life to shape us and aid the transformation process.
Change is part of God’s plan for us, but it’s hard. Change is tough enough when we’re the only ones involved.
But the role of a leader is to bring about change in others and/or in an organization. Now that’s really tough!
God modeled some powerful principles of organizational change when he urged the exclusively Jewish church in Jerusalem to embrace Gentiles. Acts 10 tells the story:
Acts 10:9-28, 34-35
Change is inherent in leadership. The enormous reversal described in this passage shows how God led Peter from being an opponent of change to becoming its champion. Notice seven principles from the passage:
1. God started where Peter was. He addressed Peter’s values and convictions (vv. 9-16). The wise innovator takes time to understand the people who must adapt to the change and demonstrates that it will not violate their values and convictions (v. 15).
2. God allowed Peter to challenge the idea (vv. 14-15). If people’s objections aren’t dealt with in a forthright and honest manner, the leader can begin to perceive their concerns as antagonism.
3. God gave Peter time to work through his resistance (vv. 16-17). Adaptation to change takes time, and the wise leader allows people the needed time to work through their reservations.
4. God permitted Peter to observe change in a limited situation before suggesting wholesale change. He allowed Peter to “try on” the change under controlled circumstances.
Effective leaders allow their people to experiment with the process of change in order for them to begin to anticipate its effects.
5. The change proposal was well prepared (vv. 1-7, 19-23, 30-33). God anticipated Peter’s questions and had evidence ready to support his answers. When introducing change, wise leaders will be prepared to answer questions that might arise.
6. God didn’t ask Peter to “change”; he invited him to participate in improving what Peter loved. Peter quickly saw the advantage of the new over the old (v. 34).
Early in the process, God demonstrated the benefits that the “new” would produce (vv. 44-46). Abandoning the comfort of the status quo can be threatening, and understanding leaders will help their followers to recognize the improvements the change will bring about.
7. God convinced a key leader and allowed that leader himself to champion the change (Acts 11:1-18). Individuals are easier to work with than a group.
Some changes need the support of a few key leaders who will then help others to reconcile themselves to the new circumstances.
Water is a liquid that fills the shape of any receptacle. As long as we trust the water and don’t tamper with the recipe – don’t dilute it, thicken it, or separate its ingredients – the content can remain the same while containers change
The mystery of the gospel is this: It is always the same (content), and it is always changing (containers).
Main ingredients in water: Water is two hydrogen atoms bonded to on oxygen atom. Hydrogen has an atomic weight of 1, while oxygen has an atomic weight of 8. I suppose you could say that, by weight, oxygen is the main ingredient, and by numbers, it's hydrogen.