How Change Happens (1)
‘We are changed into his glorious image.’ 2 Corinthians 3:18
Change happens through crisis. God changed Jacob’s name, which means ‘deceiver’, to Israel, which means ‘a prince with God’.
And He did it through crisis.
Realising he had to go home and face the wrath of his brother Esau, whom he’d mistreated, Jacob became desperate.
That night in his tent he wrestled with the angel of the Lord. And the change in his life didn’t come quickly or easily, because we’re told he wrestled until daybreak. But suddenly it dawned on Jacob that he was wrestling with God, and it was a fight he couldn’t win.
Likewise, God will let you wrestle with an issue you can’t resolve, to get your attention. He’ll bring you to the place where you must concede, ‘I can’t handle this situation. It’s too big for me. I need God!’
If that’s where you are today, you’re on the cusp of a breakthrough. If you’re asking God to make you comfortable in the mess you’re in, forget it – it’s not going to happen.
‘As an eagle stirs up its nest…so the LORD alone led him’ (Deuteronomy 32:11-12 NKJV). A mother eagle withholds food from her children to persuade them to leave the nest and learn to fly.
Can you imagine what they’re thinking? ‘It’s my mother doing this to me!’
And God will do the same to you. He’ll allow a crisis in order to get your attention. He knows you won’t change until your fear of change is surpassed by the pain you’re experiencing.
Bottom line: ‘The Lord – who is the Spirit – makes us more and more like him as we are changed into his glorious image.’
How Change Happens (2)
‘I will not let you go unless you bless me.’ Genesis 32:26
Change happens through commitment. When Jacob realised he was wrestling with the angel of the Lord, he said, ‘I will not let you go unless you bless me.’ That’s what it takes – commitment. Jacob was committed and persistent; he stuck with it until he worked his way through it.
He didn’t like where he was any more than you do. It was frustrating and it was getting him down. But he was totally committed to sticking with it until God turned it around for his good.
When God gets our attention through a crisis, He doesn’t always solve it immediately; sometimes He waits to see whether we really mean business.
We’re so conditioned to instant everything – instant food, instant Internet access, instant success – that when we don’t get an immediate answer to our prayer or an instant turnaround we say, ‘Forget it, God.’
The fact is you didn’t get into this mess overnight, and you won’t get out of it overnight. Sometimes God has to remove our weaknesses layer by layer.
Experts tell us it takes six weeks of doing the same thing every day before it becomes a habit. Think of that in terms of developing the habit of praying and reading your Bible each day, or relearning to love your spouse.
That’s six weeks…forty-two days…over a thousand hours…and Satan will fight you at every turn.
So what should you do? Spend time with God. ‘They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint’ (Isaiah 40:31 KJV).
The above posts ‘How Change Happens’ (1 – 2), were from The UCB Word for Today – 19th and 20th May 2017.
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