Summary: This message focuses on how we should prepare ourselves for change. Based on Solomon's wisdom of the ant.
Are You Prepared For Change?
I was reflecting on the song “A Change Is Gonna Come” by the late Sam Cooke. This past December marked the fiftieth anniversary of his death under mysterious circumstances. Before his untimely death, Mr. Cooke recorded this song which was released two weeks after his death in December 1964. He wrote this song because of an incident that had happened the year before when he and those with him tried to check into a whites' only motel in Louisiana and were refused accommodations. He was later arrested for disturbing the peace as he remained in the parking lot of the motel blowing the horn of his car. He felt compelled to write a song that spoke to his and the struggles of others around him. It was a song of hope and the expectation that like it or not, a change was going to come. This song became the anthem for the American Civil Rights movement.
If you’ve heard the song or read the lyrics, you see clearly that he is reflecting on a life; a life with humble beginning and the continued struggles the person faced throughout their life. The song speaks of the hard life lived and the fear of death because he did not know what was on the other side (up there beyond the sky). He spoke of the struggles of the civil rights movement when he spoke of going to the movies and being turned away and reaching out to others and being knocked down on his knees. Each verse ends with the words, “a change gonna come, oh yes it will.” This is the official version of how this song came to be. This song was not written as a gospel song even though many have sung this song in a Church setting. I can understand this because the core message of the song is the idea that although life will contain many hardships and struggles a change is going to come one day. After Sam Cooke’s death, the question was asked if this song was the result of a “premonition” that his time here on earth was coming to an end; if he knew that by some tragic means he would soon die. While we do not know the answer to this question, I want you to think about the title to this song and ask yourself – are you ready for the change that’s going to come in your life. Are you prepared for it? A change is coming whether we like it or not because life is about change. However, it is in our best interest to be ready and prayerful about the changes we will continue to face.
Three weeks ago Rev. Fulks told us that “when God’s is in it, all things are possible. She said that the holiday season was the time of year when the “hoped for” becomes the possibility – the things received. We have entered into a new year – a time where we might be carrying over some of what we hoped for in 2014 into 2015. If this is the case for you, you’re looking for change. You see, as Rev. Fulks said, “It’s not over, it’s not finished!” Rev. Folk’s message was followed by the message two weeks ago from our guest speaker Rev. Marcus Jackson. He told us that “if we put God first, everything else will fall into its rightful place.” He also said that we need to know the Lord before we experience the difficult times in our lives and that by increasing our passion about Christ we could reduce and/or eliminate our worries.
When you consider the last two messages that our Church received on the last two Sundays of 2014, it’s clear to me that God is telling us that it is time for each of us to take an inventory of our life and prepare for change. He told us that nothing is over if He’s involved in it and when He is involved in it, all things are possible. Then He told us to focus on Him – to put Him first. As I listened to those two messages I could hear God telling me in a summary:
“I know what you’re dealing with might seem like a lost cause and that your back is against the wall, but remember, all things are possible through Me. It’s not over until I say it’s over. Put Me first; trust Me; aligned yourself with Me and I will take care of everything else around you.” If you’ve entered 2015 looking for a change; praying for a change; expecting a change; are your prepared for or preparing for the change?
I. Consider The Ant And Be Wise