Friday, April 16, 2010


During every election, candidates declare a need for change, and offer themselves as the agent needed to accomplish it. What does the call for change imply? Is change good or bad? Why is there a continual call for change? Will change eventually improve things until we have reached utopia? Let me try to answer these questions one at a time.

A call for change implies several things. A condition currently exists. Not everyone agrees with the current status. The agents calling for change do not have the power to make the change, or they would already have done so. The call for change is an effort to produce enough dissatisfaction to rally voters to support "a better way of doing things." It implies that change will improve things.

Change can be both good and bad. It is recognized as good when it moves a people closer to the ideal. It is viewed as bad when it actually moves them away from the ideal. It is both when there is an even balance of pros and cons, a trade-off, a compromise, when the majority is temporarily satisfied. It is the ideal that must be evaluated to determine the value of change. In fact, the ideal is in a constant state of flux as well.

There is a continual call for change because life is not perfect, and utopia is not achievable as long as there are those who never see the glass as full, let alone half full. I once heard of a person looking for the perfect church being told not to join it because it would no longer be perfect. Contentment, by definition, is accepting the imperfect gracefully. Contentment is encouraged in the Bible (Lk 3:14; Phil 4:11; 1 Tim 6:8; Heb 13:5). Being contentious is not (Rom 2:8; 1 Cor 11:16; Titus 3:9; 3 Jn 1:10). Unfortunately, those who are not content are always the ones "rallying the troops." Those who are content have no need.

The main problem with change is that some times it makes things worse. One area may improve but at the cost of another. Some people will be blessed by a change, and others will feel disenfranchised by it. I guess the ultimate question is whether the "improvement" justifies the casualties. Generals are infamous for declaring victory in battle, even though perhaps thousands have lost their lives to achieve it. Churches also suffer from a constant state of discontentment. Some are never satisfied with something, and in order to change it, they consider those hurt, or worse driven away, to be expendable. I am reminded of Jesus, having ninety-nine sheep (percent works here as well) safely tucked into the fold, He relentlessly searched until He had found the one which was missing. To me, that means that absolutely no one is expendable. He also said something about the consequences of offending one of His little ones (less spiritually mature works her as well) as being worse than suffering being cast into the sea with a millstone attached. Be very careful. The change you make may be far more costly than the "improvement" is worth.

No comments:

Post a Comment