Embrace Change

 

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. ~ Albert Einstein

The mere idea of change can sometimes disquiet the soul, and an actual but unexpected change can rock your world. You’re going along, everything seems to be working just fine, and it’s smooth sailing. Then seemingly out of nowhere — bam! Something changes.

Change, however, doesn’t have to cause unrest or panic. Not convinced? Think of a work of art. It begins with a blank canvas and evolves. Changes happen along the way. An artist might begin with an idea of what she wants the finished piece to look like, yet end up with something different. Something that nevertheless satisfies and pleases.

Contentment develops in a similar way. You can imagine it however you choose and attempt to make it whatever you want. The only requirement along the way is the willingness to change or accept change. I’ll explain.

Consider these questions to determine where you are on the path to contentment:

• Do you have a better idea of what true contentment is?
• In what aspects of your life do you find the most contentment?
• Do you have a clear idea of where you are on your path to true contentment?
• Do you have a clear idea of where you’d like to be?
• What changes do you want to make to get closer to your idea of contentment?

The bottom line is this: if you want a different result — if you want the kind of contentment you have yet to experience — you’ll have to do something different than you’ve been doing. This “something different” will mean some degree of change in your attitude, actions, or perspective. If you’re willing to make some changes to all three, get ready for a tidal wave of contentment!

Broadcast Your Blessings

Talk about your blessings more than you talk about your burdens. ~ Unknown

Let’s talk about difficult times for a moment. Living with contentment does not mean you won’t face challenges. It doesn’t mean you won’t struggle. It doesn’t mean you’re immune to loss or natural disasters or health issues or scary medical diagnoses or global pandemics.

However, as you begin to live a life of contentment, you will be well equipped to handle trials with more grace and ease. And if you’re just now exploring what it means to be content in the midst of a storm, at first it may seem unnatural not to talk about your burdens. After all, isn’t that what most people do? Maybe, but I’m suggesting something different.

However, I’m not suggesting that you ignore the pain or completely avoid sharing what is going on. I’m simply saying, let your words about your blessings be louder. Instead of broadcasting your burdens on loudspeaker, blast your blessings to the world.

If you’re ready to think more deeply about those burdens, consider the blessings resulting from the challenge you’re facing. Are you learning to be more compassionate? To extend grace more freely? Have you connected with people you wouldn’t have otherwise? Or stopped taking someone for granted? Have you learned how to ask for help — and let someone else help you, giving them the opportunity to be great? Or how did you get to be great in this situation?

I encourage you to look for the blessings among or within the burdens. The blessings are there. This doesn’t discount your feelings or anything you’re going through. If you let them, awareness of the blessings will provide a softer refuge for your burdened heart.

Excerpted with permission from Love the Life You Have by Jean Fischer copyright Thomas Nelson.

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Your Turn

There’s blessing even in change. Let’s look for the good things God is doing in our lives even through the pandemic, even through changing seasons, changing lives, changing times. What are you looking forward to this coming year? What are you thanking God for? Come share with us! We want to hear from you! ~ Laurie McClure, Faith.Full

Jean Fischer (www.jeanfischer.com) is a professional writer with a solid background in publishing. As a freelance writer, she has co-written books with Christian authors/teachers John MacArthur, John C. Maxwell, Sarah Young, Sheila Walsh, and others. Jean writes text for adult and children's devotionals, fiction and nonfiction, and children's picture and chapter books. She also creates promotional material for a leading fast-food restaurant and is a contributing writer for K-6 Language Arts textbooks. Recent work-for-hire projects include: "The Jesus Calling Bible Storybook" by Sarah Young (Jean Fischer, compilation editor), Thomas Nelson; and "God's Little Angel Shine Your Light" by Sheila Walsh (Jean Fischer, co-author), Thomas Nelson.

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