It was a cold Saturday morning in January as I was sitting comfortably in my warm apartment drinking coffee and chatting with a friend.
“Maybe,” he said 2021 could be the time to finally make some of those changes you’re always talking about.”
I wrote him off immediately.
I’m not a fan of change. I get a stabbing feeling in my chest and the world seems to slow down around me at the very thought of making big life decisions. It’s not good.
In 5th-grade science class, I remember learning the definition of homeostasis.
Homeostasis: “A process that living things use to actively maintain fairly stable conditions necessary for survival.”
Every living thing actively fights against change, including me.
I feel like I have worked so hard on crafting and building my life into something happy, and it doesn’t take much to rock that fragile foundation. I get overwhelmed at goodbyes, cry when my favorite coworkers leave, and I would rather stay complacent at the risk of messing something up. But sometimes earthquakes of change are inevitable.
My friend was right. 2021 was a year of change.
In February, I quit a job I loved to explore new opportunities. It was scary, and emotional, but ultimately good. It helped me grow, and become better at what I do.
But it was still change, and there was still and adjustment period I had to go through.
On top of all of that, some of my closest relationships with friends and family became a little strained, and other situations caused depression and anxiety. As I lost people in my life that I cared about, everything felt like it was moving faster than the speed of sound and I was left frozen in the dark.
Eventually, seemingly out of the blue, I found myself taking a new job yet again and was thrust again into a wave of change.
That’s ALOT of change for someone who never changes their order up at Panda Express in fear they’ll be disappointed with their order.
Good changes. Bad changes. Whole new routines to get used to. But in the middle of this year, I found 3 reminders that God is still actively at work in my turbulent life.
1) There Are No “What If’s”
I’m a “what if” kind of person.
What if I didn’t make the right decision? What if life never goes back to normal? What if life gets worse? What if I should have tried harder?
What if? What if? What if?
But the problem about “What if” is that it doesn’t do anything except fuel my anxiety and depression.
Whenever I start to fall down the “what if” rabbit hole, a quote from Corrie Ten-Boom always helps me out of it.
“There are no ‘ifs’ in God’s world.”
I had to give myself permission to stop dwelling on past circumstances and dwell on the now.
2) God Is Still at Work
While I can’t go back and fix my past, I can be confident that God can and is at work in my present. When I’m in the middle of change, I can easily feel hopeless and overwhelmed, but God is a redeemer. He can use everything, even my confusing present, for His good.
God’s specialty is taking hopeless situations, all of our broken things, wrong choices, and He creates something beautiful out of them.
In this season of transition, I have learned so many wonderful things, and I have made so many wonderful friends. I wouldn’t trade them for the world.
If you look, there is beauty even in the change that hurts.
3) Focus on What You Can Control
There’s a lot of things in life I can’t control, and it stresses me out. This year, I’m learning to stop obsessing over the things I can’t change.
Instead, I’m focusing on growing stronger in my faith, investing in my friendships, and asking for help when needed.
Maybe like me, you are in a season of change. I pray you lean into God’s promises, cling to hope, and know that He is there through all of the hurt.