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Tuesday, October 19, 2010

COLUMN: Fresh Manna: Breaking of Bread From Heaven

Change is on the horizon. Even the climatic seasons lets us know that change is imminent. Summer has ended. Can’t you feel the chill of the autumn air and see the golden-brown leaves falling to the ground? That’s change you can see and feel. But what about the seasonal changes of life; those you cannot see or feel. Is this the change that we can believe in? Climatic seasonal changes are synonymous to changes in the seasons of life. Everything has its own time according to the book of Ecclesiastes Chapter 3, “To everything there is a season.”

Perhaps you are dealing with some transitional changes in your own spiritual, physical, emotional or economical life. Change, although painful at times, is needful. Change is necessary for us to succeed in life, but effective change requires some work on our part. Often, I have heard people say, “The only place you will find success before work is in the dictionary.” I remember a great quote from one of my instructors in the school of ministry, “Change is not change until you change.”

Jesus often spoke in parables in the Bible to provoke change or to illustrate profound truths in certain situations. In Luke Chapter 8, He used the Parable of the Sower. He spoke to an infamous king in Daniel 5 by handwriting on the wall. Through my own experiences, I’ve discovered that God can and will speak by any means necessary to effect change in my life.


Over some eight years ago, I read “Who Moved My Cheese?” Today I still highly recommend this book to anyone dealing with or looking for change. On the front cover of the book are red inscriptions that read, “An A-Mazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life.” After reading the book, I penned this entry in my journal on May 16, 2001:

“…I saw this sign on the billboard that read, “We need to talk God.” I am rephrasing it…God? We need to talk. NOW! I am talking to you with my pen. I may get ugly in what I say, but then you know me because you know my heart. It’s time for a change or move to occur in my life that will take me to the next level. When I read the book, “Who Moved My Cheese?” I was inspired and encouraged. I am a lot like Sniff and Haw. I will eventually move out of my comfort zone with some coaching, even fearful and afraid, but I am willing to take the plunge….”

Are you believing God for some changes in your life? Prayer changes things, and most importantly; prayer changes people. Yes! I got change, but the change was much more than
what I had envisioned for myself. If you are seeking change of any type or a new direction for your life, watch out! Fear will emerge through the opened door along with you. Fear stood toe-to-toe with me and never blinked its eyes. When I got the nudge to leave my good government job after 25 years of service in 1994, I struggled with it. But after the change was effected, I never looked back. Eight years later in 2003, I felt that tug again. With a little less resistance, I resigned from a staff position at my local church, and move forward. In the book, cheese metaphorically represented those things we desire in life to make us happy and successful.
Was I ready to move forward for my new cheese? Absolutely! One of the many inscriptions Haw wrote on the wall read, “The Quicker You Let Go of Old Cheese, The Sooner You Will Find New Cheese.” Letting go was hard… ouch!! The S-T-R-E-T-C-H-I-N-G really hurts.


I was comforted in knowing that God had a plan for my life (Jeremiah 29:11), and His plan unfolded daily. Was I afraid? Terrified is an understatement. But God does not change; He is the same today, yesterday and forever (see Hebrews 13:8). With the fears still tail-gating me, I embraced them and move forward on the path to destiny. Between 2001 and 2009, God took me completely out of my comfort zone. Here are a few of those God Winks (favors) upon my life after embracing change:


Released as speaker/writer – With the publication of two books and numerous published clips, doors opened for me to speak and teach at writing and ministry-related conferences and workshops. Doors opened for radio and television interviews to discuss my literary work. Some interviews led to the publication of several articles in newspapers and magazines.


Relocated to new church - The change continued in 2005. After 19+ years fellowshipping at my former church, God says, “It’s time to go to the next level.” That was almost 6 years ago, and all I can say is God is so faithful.


Enrollment and Completion of School of Ministry
In January 2005, we were happily settled in our new church. A few months later, the tugging started again. While attending the graduation of the Class of 2005, God spoke to my heart to enroll in the upcoming class, but I wasn’t trying to hear Him. He has a great sense of humor… but I wasn’t laughing either… He won!! Over the next two years, He took me through an intensive training in character building and cultivating spiritual fruit (see Galatians 5:22-23). Because of His grace and favor, I graduated in 2007 as class Salutatorian. To God be the Glory!


Deja vu! As the curtains close on 2010!  – Change is tugging at my heartstrings again. What’s up now? I cannot fathom what’s ahead; but in due time, He will reveal it to me. “Here I am Lord, send me.” Who Moved My Cheese? is on my reading list once again. Dejavu! Here we go again.


Happy Journaling!


Journaling Assignment: Jot down your thoughts on those changes affecting your life. How do they make you feel? I encourage you to either read or re-read “Who Moved My Cheese?” Get ready, my friend, for change is headed in your direction too.

Claudia Newby-Tynes, entrepreneur of Write 4U, is an author, speaker, teacher, and mentor. She has written two books and is a contributor to one. Claudia has approximately 200+ published credits online and in print publications. She served as both a columnist for The Spirit-Led Writer and a planning committee/faculty member for the Sandy Cove Christian Writers’ Conference. She is married and has one grown son. For more information, visit
http://claudiatynes.com/


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