by Dawn Aldrich
I like coffee. More so in the cooler months of fall and winter than through the warmer spring and summer months. But one thing I’ve noticed of late, I like to change up my daily grind to coincide with the changing season.
For instance, in the warmer seasons, I prefer the light, fruity flavor and scent of blueberry coffee. I don’t know, maybe it’s good marketing or good aroma therapy, but it reminds me of summer as a kid, eating fists full of wild blueberries from my grandfather’s farm.
In the fall, of course I’ve fallen for the ever-popular pumpkin spice or salted caramel flavors. Who doesn’t want to be reminded of sitting in a pumpkin patch or biting into a caramel apple at the local fair minus all those sugary calories?
And winter? Well, there’s the holiday blends that brew up memories of cinnamon sticks and Christmas sugar cookies that seem to carry you straight through the worst blizzards and comfort your soul.
Well, you get the idea. I like change…beyond changing seasons or my coffee flavors. I welcome change in my faith walk. I confess, I’m a human being that, while I find comfort in the sameness of a season, I can also easily grow complacent if I’m not challenged to think outside my present “faith box” if you will. Sometimes a change in the daily grind of my faith walk reminds me that I hold Kingdom purpose and I need to refocus.
Sometimes change is voluntary and sometimes its forced upon me by life’s challenges, emergencies, or tragedies. I’ve experienced spiritual change and growth in both instances.
Voluntary change is best. It’s when we voluntarily refocus our attention on Jesus; seeking Him with all our hearts, and desiring the Holy Spirit to move us forward and further into our God-led desires. God delights in His people, especially when they seek Him with all of their hearts. It’s in this precious relationship, this give and take, soul-honest conversation and worship that God speaks intimately and we hear effectively. It’s here we’re able to move forward with joy and fullness of life.
Involuntary change comes through life’s challenges, emergencies or tragedies. Not a fun time of refocus. (And, please, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying God causes these situations to draw us nearer to Him. God does not cause tragedy. A broken world, poor choices by ourselves or others, and our Enemy cause tragedies). But, through these messed up times, when life is out of our control, that God has used these experiences to grow my faith, to open up new opportunities, or to make relational connections to further His kingdom purposes down the road. It’s through life’s unwelcome surprises where we must trust God to guide us through every moment of every day until we realize there’s a new normal and we’re experiencing a new flavor of life.
Whatever causes the change, scripture reassures us “…that in all things God works for the good of those who love him and have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 NIV
Whether you find yourself ready to voluntarily change up the daily grind of your faith walk, or you find yourself in the midst of an unwelcome life surprise, trust God to work for your good. Seek Him with all your heart, mind, strength and body. And if you need to borrow some strength, call upon someone you can trust to come alongside you and bear your burdens.