Resistance to Change
by JohnBagwell
 Faith & Family
May 19, 2012 | 2771 views |  0 comments | 22 22 recommendations | email to a friend | print | permalink

I honestly wasn't going to write about my new glasses, but WOW what a difference!!  As soon as I put the new glasses on, everything snapped into crystal clear focus, everything had a fine edge, and that cloud in the room completely disappeared.  It was as if someone had changed my world into HD!  I could see details on things, and I didn't have to search through the fog of scratches on my glasses to find a clear spot to see things up close.  Plus, my new glasses were so much lighter than my old ones.

While those are all the good things that happened, some other immediate effects were a slight dizziness, and then a slight headache.  My eyes kept wanting to wander to the place where I had a clear spot on my other glasses, and in short, though everything was now ten times better than before, the new glasses were uncomfortable.  Things had changed, and I just wasn't used to it.

When it comes to change, when it is unfamiliar and a little uncomfortable, or even painful, people resist it.  Even when the change is a very good thing, people want to go back.  Like my eyes still going to a spot on my glasses after so many years of habit, people will tend to want to go back into old routines even when life is better.

Whether it is you or someone else who needs to make a change, you are better served understanding that you are in an uphill battle.  The change can be a good thing, the change can be a helpful thing, the person can even want the change, but there will always be some level of resistance, and it is best you prepared for it ahead of time.  I am very aware of my own weaknesses, and have struggled my whole life overcoming them one at a time.  In every case, even when things were changing for the better, I found a resistance of habit to overcome, or a desire to go back to the way things were for any number of reasons.

I see people around me who also need to change, but knowing how hard I struggle, it is difficult for me to have any expectation that things will get better just because I want them to.  Now matter how clearly I see things, no matter how much better I just know life would be if other people would just change, the truth is, they just don't want to.  They want things to be better, of course, but not if it means change for them.  Guess what . . . if you search inside yourself, you feel the exact same way.

We all know we need to make some "minor changes" but the real problem is "everyone else!"  RIGHT?!  Well, not so fast.

A very interesting conversation took place this week that makes me believe otherwise.  A husband and wife are having some serious problems at home.  She wishes he would change.  She loves her husband, but prays God will do a work in his life to make him see his need to do better.  Guess what he's doing?  He's wishing his wife would change, and he is also praying like crazy that God would do a work in the life of his wife to make her see the need to do better.

I discovered that praying for other people to change so my life can be better is, let me just say it, stupid.  I cannot control them, and even if they see and know they need to change there is going to be resistance.  God is working on them (and all of us) already, so constantly praying for God to make them change is tantamount to asking God to work harder or faster just so we can have a better life according to our will.  Hmmmmmm.  Somehow I just get a sense that praying like that isn't going to move things along.

What can I do about it?  Well, I can change me.  It is counter-intuitive, I know, but it is the only thing I have ever seen make a difference.  The only thing that stands in your way is pride.  Once you begin to think in terms of "How can I change to make this situation better?" then you gain some measure of influence on the situation.  If we all took responsibility for our own actions, and tried to change our perspective from "if he/she would just" to one of "I really need to" then I think real change is not only possible in your life, but your change just may inspire others to make a change in theirs.

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