Therefore we do not lost heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (NIV, my emphasis)
The older I get the more I have to work at being flexible and accept change. Change is a daily occurrence. Just as the stoplights change at every street corner so there are situations that come that require me to make a course correction. Is God behind them? Would God have me switch directions? Absolutely.
God took a shepherd called David and made him a king. He took persecutor named Paul and made him a disciple. He took a prostitute named Mary and made her an evangelist. He took a CPA I know named John and made him a pastor. He took a nurse named Jody and made her a teacher and author. Go figure!
The words that brought Paul to say â€œThereforeâ€ at the beginning of our Scripture tell us about the treasure that we have in Jesus and that we are to testify/witness to His love and mercy. The treasure did not come to us without a price. Jesus paid that price in full. Our salvation is sealed. However, the path that takes us to that ultimate prize is a path through this world and it will include pain and suffering, just as Jesus suffered on His path to the cross. Our pain is momentary and if we follow Jesusâ€™ example we will keep our eyes on the eternal and choose not to allow ourselves be distracted or discouraged by what is temporary.
Fifteen years ago I had a dream and plan for my life. It involved many successes from this world. God wanted more for me. My mother said I was a â€œsomewhat stubborn childâ€. She was right. And the changes that have come in my life have come despite my efforts to try to jerk the â€˜steering wheelâ€™ from Jesusâ€™ hands. But Jesusâ€™ love is stronger and deeper than my will. He did not give up on me and now I find myself rich in so many ways that I could not have asked or imagined.
Change is still not an easy concept. There are only two options: Love it or fight it! I could not be described as embracing but I am looking with expectation on what is next! When I pray, I am learning not to be so narrow in listening for Godâ€™s answer. My heart is becoming tender like Samuel as I whisper, â€œSpeak, Father, your child is listening!â€
All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God. 2 Corinthians 4:15 (NIV)