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Too Much Too Fast

Too Much Too Fast

25 September 2010

Today’s Reading: Ezra 2-3; Luke 8

Scripture:

Later, a great many people from the Gerasene countryside got together and asked Jesus to leave—too much change, too fast, and they were scared. So Jesus got back in the boat and set off. (Luke 8:37 MSG)

Jesus’ demonstration of love for one person and disregard for economics set a demon-possessed man free and sent a herd of pigs into the lake. It was a clear picture of compassion, power, and God’s priorities, but it was too much, too fast, for the people of the community to take on board. They asked him to leave. He left.

People are wired in a lot of different ways – some won’t change, some resist change, some slowly change, and some are agents of change. But no matter how we handle change, we can only take so much change so fast. This exceeded their capacity for change.

Rate of change for people is kind of like rate of climb for an aircraft. You have a certain amount of power, a certain amount of weight to move, and the power to weight ratio determines how steeply or rapidly you can climb. In helping people change, you have a certain amount of inspirational, motivating force, a certain mass of people with a level of resistance to change, and this ratio determines how fast change can happen without crashing into the ground.

One thing is certain, change is necessary! I must continue to follow Jesus where he leads, learn what he is teaching me, and change and grow at the rate his plan for my life requires. The church must change. It’s no longer adequate to gather in our church buildings each week, saying, “This is how we do church. Take it or leave it!” Each of us Christ-following Christians must embrace change and growth and we must go out from our gatherings shining the light, sharing the grace, and touching our communities and our world with the life of Jesus.

Prayer:

Father, I pray for leaders whom you have commissioned to bring about change in lives and churches and communities to have enough inspirational motivating force and enough wisdom to lead at the optimum rate of change. I pray for the people in our churches to be responsive to the changes we need to make to reach our communities and the next generation for Christ. Please help us! Amen.

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