We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.
Proverbs 16:9 NLT
Neuroscience tells us that change offers us uncertainty and the brain interprets uncertainty as an error code. It wants to correct that error before moving on. Yet, from the moment we choose to walk the Christian path, we know that we must change. Decisions are now taken in the light of all that we discover about the Christian way. So I agree that I must change and pursue the life of a carer, but I can only see problems. I interpret this as a role I don’t want, it will rob me of pursuing my career, take away my financial security and I’ve no skills to draw upon. I have interpreted what I think lies on the other side of that change.
My thoughts sink into a low mood as I react to what I conceive as a negative role. My mind uses life history, previous experiences and personality predispositions to interpret the change as I perceive it, to put it into a context and to give it meaning. I then use this distorted picture to make my decisions – the problem being, those decisions by this stage are well beyond my conversation with God.
The good news is that God determines my steps. Steps are small incremental movements towards my objective. In all changes we need to acknowledge our fears and set out our interpretation of what we see is happening. That interpretation might be flawed, but my brain can’t see it that way. As I explored the role of carer, I found my true calling, accompanying people through challenges and in difficult decision-making. All from a renewed place of prayer.
When facing a change forced upon you by necessity, follow the FIRE regulations. Consider the facts as you know them and check them for accuracy. Then look at how you are interpreting those facts both positively and negatively. Be honest with yourself and others about your reactions. Before settling on the end game. This is now my FIRE drill for change.
Think back to past changes in your life that were initially daunting. Did God help you and change your perceptions?
Thank you, God, for guiding my steps in the past. As I recall your faithfulness to me, may it give me fresh courage to face the uncertainties ahead.