you don’t have to change

People say change is inevitable.

It can’t be stop and it’s going to happen.

While that may be true for the greater world you can choose not to change. Sometimes that’s a really good thing. I will love my wife and my children every day for the rest of my life. I’m made that choice and I will make that choice every day. I refuse to change.

I shouldn’t eat hot dogs. They are all kinds of terrible and even I would struggle to say with a straight face that are anything other than horrible for you. But I refuse to give them up.

I will not give up hot dogs.

Some change is good some is bad.

Giving up hot dogs would be good.

Not loving my family bad.

So on principal there is nothing wrong with the concept of saying I will not change. But how do we know if we’re making the right choice when we refuse to change in an area?

This drifts back to one of my favourite spaces and one of the odder stories about myself I’ve shared.

I think this is the time for the hard self-reflection I think Jesus has called us to. The difficult process of saying “who am I really?” Not who do I want to be or who do I wish I was or who do I tell everyone I am but who am I really.

I’ve talked about this before. It’s a horrible process.

But how can we talk about change in our life if we don’t even know where we are starting from?

How can we decide if we need to be more loving, generous, and gracious if we don’t know how those elements of our lives manifest themselves NOW.

One of the ways you can do this is to start with who you think/say you are and work backwards.

Go ahead give it a go now.

Who do you say you are? Write it down with each note of who you are on a new line.

It may look like this:

A father

A Christian

A friend

Someone who cares about community

Someone who cares about the environment

Someone who is healthy

Someone who is gracious…

Now write beside everything you’ve written what a person, not you, but a person who is a “someone who is healthy” would live like.

Do you do that? Are those really that person?

I remember the first time I did some of this type of reflection one of the things that stood out was a claim that I am a healthy person.

Problem was I wasn’t.

I love pizza, hot dogs, beer and sitting on my couch.

So I had to decide am I a healthy person or not?

This led me to make changes. I started riding an exercise bike in my livening room every day. But I also refused to give up parts of the old me.

So there I am sitting on an exercise bike, playing video games, drinking a beer.

Can you picture this?

My mother in law walked into our home and I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone more confused.

But that was who I am. I’m someone trying to be healthier who still loves video games and beer.

But it was honest and real. I wasn’t lying to myself anymore.

So maybe none of this compassion stuff is really interesting to you. Maybe you don’t change because you are actively refusing to like I actively refuse to change when it comes to loving my family. Maybe you don’t think this is really what your life is supposed to be or what Jesus has called you to.

Just make sure that the things you refuse to give up aren’t the hot dogs of your life.

Or at the very least be honest that you’d rather have hot dogs than be compassionate

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