Wednesday, March 4, 2020

Always the Same - Martin Wiles

I am the Lord, and I do not change. Malachi 3:6 NLT
I knew change would come, but it came sooner than I wanted.
I enjoy change … well, some change. Such as technology change. It makes my life easier. But once I get accustomed to the change, I don’t necessarily want another change to change the change I’ve grown used to. Such as my Gmail.
Google warned me change was coming. Weeks before, I began seeing little advertisement messages. They didn’t tell me the exact date, but they said a new version of Gmail would soon arrive. I could switch now if I wanted to. I chose not to. I feared how it might look. I didn’t have time to adapt. My mornings—or afternoons or evenings—were already too busy. So I clicked, “Not Now.”
Then, one day it happened without further warning. I opened my Gmail and a new icon appeared … and then a new page. A cluttered page that showed the emails and the attachments. I didn’t like it, but I couldn’t stop it. I saw no “I Don’t Like This Page and Want My Old One Back” button.
One thing I’ve learned about Google—and most any other applications—is that they will not remain the same. Someone continuously works on a new look.
Not the same with God. He never changes, but His people weren’t excited about this trait. He had been, was, and would always discipline them when they went astray. Not because He was a mean deity waiting on them to mess up, but because He loved them and wanted His best for them.
When God says He doesn’t change, at least two things come to mind. He will consistently confront me when I disobey His commands. He knows obeying them will keep me in line with the very best lifestyle. Doing so will also keep me connected to Him, since He cannot tolerate or associate with wickedness.
The other thing that won’t change is God’s love. Although His love and discipline are not mutually exclusive, He will always love us because His nature is love. Even if we don’t love Him in return, He still loves. Love leads Him to want a relationship with us—one that is vibrant, reciprocating, and healthy. All we have to do is accept it.
Don’t spurn the one thing God offers that never changes.
Prayer: Father, we praise You for giving us a love that never changes.

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