As I drive through Woodburn, I notice all the construction work going on. (Is there any missing it?) We must turn left to get on northbound I-5. Surveyors have marked where new sidewalks would go on Newberg Highway. Now those sidewalks and gutters are in place. They are paving the highway at night to reduce the impact it will have on daily traffic. Woodburn is under construction. Change is coming. No, change is here. I have noticed the comments many have made (as well as my own thoughts on the subject) that these improvements are inconvenient. None of us have escaped the transformation to the city. We are under construction.
Now that the improvements are here, I notice I dread them. Change is uncomfortable. It affects every aspect of life. I’ve noticed that when I think of new things, I must think of the cost. There is a price that is paid for transformation. We sacrifice our comfort zone; our schedule and routine must be set aside. But this is the price we pay for the life we desire.
It’s one thing when it’s road construction, but quite another when it’s the unrepaired places in our lives; those places where God loves us as we are but is not willing to leave us there. Many people think that all they need to do is warn others. “I have trouble getting along with people.” “I have a problem with my temper.” “That’s just the way I am, and people will have to take me that way.”
Whatever statements we make, we actually mean, “We take no responsibility for this condition and feel no obligation to do anything about it.” We admit a shortcoming, and announce that we’re going to leave things the way they were.
The Apostle Paul says we’re under construction. “…in Christ, you are a new creation. The old is done away, behold the new has come” (2 Cor. 5:17). Thinking of this reminds me of some of the characters of the Bible, they were transformed into better people. Jacob was a rascal as a young man, but he changed. David, shepherd boy turned king, failed God many times but always turned back to God again. Young Joseph, his father’s favorite son, was a smart aleck and conceited. After his imprisonment and rise to rule alongside Pharaoh, we see a different Joseph. He now shows compassion and tenderness. Paul says we are in the process of growing/changing. God never intended that we remain the same. We cannot say “That’s the way I am” as a statement of excuse. Rather, it’s the beginning of change. God is making a new person in us. With pride we can say, we are under construction.
Pastor Peter J. Blank
Newsletter PDF June 2014 web