St. Mark M.B. Church
Scripture Reference: Genesis 9:1
As we continue to “Face What’s Forward” and embrace the change God desires for our lives in terms of what is good and productive for us, the story of Noah and his journey allows for an exemplar look at what forward looks like in the midst of a personal journey. Understanding fully that God will help us matriculate through change to become agents of change that brings hope, help, and healing to others for the glory of God. In doing so, we must examine the question in front of this next facet of change: What does change need us to know to stick? Such a profound question certainly requires reflection and is answered by adhering to the recommendation of restraining from rushing change and taking particular note of three essential directives. Consider the following text of scripture: “God blessed Noah and his sons and said to them, Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth.” Genesis 9:1 Now being anchored in scripture, we can begin towards making gains to unpack God’s words, His instruction for moving forward, and walking to change.
- Be Fruitful: Here lives the fundamental understanding that change has a starting point.
- Change is personal – God desires us to change in order for the world to have an example of what change can look like. There must be growth. Change needs to be in us and not outside of us spilling over.
- Change is progressive – God desires growth; moving from fruit to more fruit and then, to much more fruit. Using the analogy of a tree, If we are the branches of a tree, God desires growth from us that can produce much fruit and will allow others to benefit from our growth, the fruit we bear. As it is the last Sunday in February, this is a good place to note the revelation Dr. King acknowledges as he delivers his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech, April 3, 1968. Dr. King declares “But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop…I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you.” Further, when we reject this idea of progressive growth, it is the equivalent of stunting God’s glory because of a refusal to grow and be fruitful.
- Change is painful – Change may feel uncomfortable, change infected into the culture may bring even bring pain, but knowing someone else’s success and survival may require it adds the urgency of what is good and right. To add, God sometimes has to “cut” something out because we can stunt our own growth. What does God need to pull out of your life to make room for change?
- And multiply: Change has a sharing period. (refer to Amos 3:3)
- Sharing is done purposefully – people who can identify with your level of purpose. There is order and affinity to those you are going to help, those who are ready for assistance.
- Sharing is done peacefully. Change should not be forced upon others. Forcing change on others could potentially hurt them more than any potential good can be birth from the change.
- Sharing is done patiently. Be open and ready for the season.
- Go fill the earth: Change needs a structural framework. We must know the capacity to hold and not spill, this requires the intelligence not to exceed our capacity to fill versus overfilling.
- Change can cause people to “trip”, to lose sight of what is going on and the growth process.
- Change can cause people to slip.
- Change can cause people to skip the process of changing and revert back to their former ways.
God desires good, positive change that brings each of us closer to Him for His glory. Let us always find ourselves in a position to hear from the Father and in obedience to His will for us because He loves us and knows what is best for us. Seemingly, for most of us, moving forward and waiting on God takes great discipline, but as believers, we can look back over our lives with the resolve that God has a plan and purpose for each of us and His plan far exceeds ours. Learning to trust God, studying God’s word, and being strengthened by it is part of His will. Be encouraged!