Monday, October 3, 2016

The Joy of Change and the Season of Death

So, its been like "to infinity and beyond" since I have written on this blog - but, my sweet daughter Abbie has inspired me to write by starting her own blog.

I want to write about the desire to change.  Change is good, but it is easy to think that we cannot change.  Beyond this, we get stuck in our ways and actually like the fact that we are "unchangeable". There is an invigorating feeling that comes when you make a change - you realize that you are not the person you used to be (for the good.)

I have been very vocal about my traditional hatred of the season called "Fall".  The very name is negative.  It is the season that everything dies.  The comfy smells are the smell of death, and stop pouring pumpkin into my coffee, thank you. I guess it must have happened sometime in the last 20 years when I experienced a terrible Autumn.  It is sort of like that intersection that you drive through where you had an accident years before.  There is something within me like Pavlov's dog that connects Fall with darkness.

It is a deep darkness that I feel - like the foreboding of a horror movie.  It is real, and tangible to me.  It is further scored by Halloween, the barren trees, the cold and damp weather......  HOWEVER!

I am writing about change.  I have "decided" this year to LIKE FALL.  You smirk in disdain as you read those words because you think that one does not simply "change" to enjoy something (or walk into Mordor).  But, that is where you are wrong.  I have found the joy of total change in several aspects of my life.  I have found that preferences and opinions can simply be......changed.  These are not "convictions" after all.  This is not a spiritual matter I am talking about.  It certainly doesn't apply to the taste of food or your favorite pair of jeans --- it is about other things; lesser things - like Fall.

One of my first revelations about complete change came as a Youth Pastor when I would go visit the teens at our Christian School at lunchtime.  I sat at their tables and "naturally" ate THEIR snacks with them.  It became part of the "visit".  Well, it wasn't long before I began to be labeled a "mooch".  I didn't like that label and its connotations.  I actually wanted to be a giving person.  So, I decided to CHANGE.

For many months I would go and visit with them and refuse every Doritos, apple wedge, cheese stick, etc. that was offered to me.  I absolutely would not eat one nibble of anything.  Guess what?  My reputation totally changed and so did my acceptance by the teens.  Instead of hiding their food from me, the teens began to insist that I would eat their snacks with them. (which I wouldn't). This may be a "lame" illustration to you, but it was an "aha" moment for me.  I realized that there are many things in my life that I can simply - on the fly - change.  The domino effect of those changes can be astronomical.  Again, I am not talking about the sanctification work of God, I am talking about things you have been doing all our life that you can realize you are not bound to do.  You are not forced to be that way.  You are not glued to your preference or habit in those things.  There are many things that you can just simply decide one day to change.

And so, I have decided to like Fall this year.  No kidding.  I have decided not to hate it - and guess what?  Its working.  Try it, you may find that you don't have to be the person that you have been.

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