Change is hard!
Yes indeed it is. I do not like change. I realized this early this year as my life was moving quickly from one change to another. I used to think I liked change but the reality is I just get comfortable with where I am and unless something really forces me to change, well a lot of times I don’t change.
Even the thought of writing about my dislike of change brought me to a place of procrastination. This is actually pretty much my regular repertoire. God is working on me though. He is really stretching me to step out of my comfort zone. This blog is really a stretch outside of my comfort zone to be honest. But if we don’t allow Jesus to change us then we may never realize our true potential.
It has been three weeks since I started this post. The content flowed really well in my head and then somehow I just couldn’t bring the words to the keyboard. I have written and revised many times already but today I decided that it has been long enough so I need to get this done and posted.
As I was walking to work on October 7th I was admiring the beautiful trees that had been changing colors and the leaves on the ground. I was feeling really lazy that morning and I didn’t really want to walk to work. It’s literally a 9 minute walk but there’s this hill that I absolutely dread every time. It’s really not a big hill but for me it has been a challenge. So as I am walking up that hill I was praying about how I didn’t like the hill and the Lord reminded me of something that was said to me not too long ago about how when things get hard I tend to stop and withdraw. Ouch! The reality of that truth hit me hard.
I began to think about the hard things that I’ve endured in my life as I considered the idea of change. When I encounter change that is hard I tend to quit, give up or stay stagnant. Well life changes all the time. We have to either roll with it or we do become stagnant and quite frankly stagnant water stinks. When I was living under tremendous stress from abuse it took me a while to get out from under it because even though the situation was difficult it was something I thought I could control. I didn’t know what would happen if I just stepped out of that situation. All the “what if’s” were flooding my mind. What if I can’t get away fast enough? What if he finds me? What if something worse happens? What if I can’t find another man? What if I can’t handle raising my kids by myself? What if_______?
I have to wonder how many women stay in abusive situations because it is just so much easier to endure than to change. I remember the first day I spent at a domestic violence shelter. I wouldn’t speak to anyone there with the exception of the staff. My head hung down and I never looked up to speak to anyone when they tried to talk to me. I didn’t want to be there. I didn’t want to have my life turned upside down. I just wanted to go back home to the life I was used to and even though it was difficult I knew the routines. I knew how to walk on eggshells and I was familiar with playing the game of pretending that I was happy. Now I was in this house with 8 other women who had their own stories. It took me three days before I was able to talk to anyone. There was a sweet woman on staff who took me aside and forced me to look at myself in the mirror. She challenged me to say I love you to the reflection that stared back at me all battered and bruised. I couldn’t say it. I cried. She challenged me to keep going back to that mirror until I could say it. It took a while but a few days later I said it. That simple act helped me to begin to speak with the other women.
It would be many years before I could truly look in the mirror and say I love you to myself. Even though I was able to say it back then at the shelter and it helped a little bit the real change of beginning to love myself didn’t start to take affect on my life until I began to surrender my life to Jesus. Still it took another several years for me to really understand love and to receive love.
All these memories came flooding into my mind that breezy beautiful morning three weeks ago as I walked up that hill. When I got to the top of the hill I smiled and yelled “Thank You Jesus”. I walked the rest of the way with a quickness in my step and a smile on my face as I realized that just as I had conquered the hill that morning I could conquer anything because truly I can do all things through Christ. So I planned to write this blog post that day and somehow I just couldn’t get it together. The result of that day and then the candlelight vigil the next day began a journey of self discovery over the past three weeks. Now that I have finally finished this entry I believe I can go on to share some of the lessons I have had over this short period of time. I will continue to talk about change in the next post.
God bless each and every one of you that has read this blog today. I would appreciate your feedback.