Change can be difficult, challenging, scary, and overwhelming. We can meet with great resistance in the church when seeking to bring about a change. But, if we’re implementing and managing change in accordance with the basics of life in Christ as already discussed in this Practicum, having prayed about it, we need to move forward. Thankfully, God provides the power we need to proceed despite the obstacles. And, what better power to pull on than resurrection power when it comes to change! The resurrection is about change:
from death to life (Rom. 6:13)
from perishable to imperishable (1 Cor. 15:42)
from dishonor to glory (1 Cor. 15:43)
from weakness to power (1 Cor. 15:43)
from natural to spiritual (1 Cor. 15:44)
We need resurrection power because we need hope — hope that change is possible; hope that change will come. If God can raise Jesus from the dead, can’t He take us to new places in the Church? If in the last days God can raise all the dead, can’t He work in and through the living right now seeking to do His will?
What We Need to Remember in the Change Process to find Hope through Resurrection Power:
Resurrection power sounds glorious and spectacular, and it is. Resurrection power sounds like pulling on it should result in instantaneous results since we’re likening it to moving from death to life but that isn’t necessarily so.
- In pulling on resurrection power, we need to remember that before the resurrection came suffering and death. Jesus experienced betrayal, mockery, physical torture, great agony, and a cruel death on the cross.
I want to know Christ – yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death … (Phil. 3:10-11)
Change in the Church, even that which we’re sure is God’s will, doesn’t always come easy. We may need to first work through some issues, pain, and hardships before we get there. The key in remembering this reality is that we give God space to work. We must guard against going into “fix it” mode which so often brings ruin of many good ideas. We must be willing to walk through the process.
- If we want to experience resurrection power when implementing change, we must remember that there may be a period of waiting before we see the good that God will bring out of it. God was silent until the third day after Jesus died. The key in remembering this reality is that we don’t prematurely abandon the pursuit, assuming the change we thought God wanted to bring was wrong because the good didn’t come right away.
… And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Heb. 12:1-3)
Grabbing hold of resurrection power is about hope … what will happen, not necessarily what happens right now. With all the complexities and challenges of managing change, church leaders need that hope!
One More Point to Remember about Resurrection Power and Change
Just like in Jesus’ day, there will be people who don’t think change is good, or even possible. We need to remember that there have always been naysayers and not become manipulated into letting go of the change God wants to bring about in our churches.
We need to remember what Jesus said to the Sadducee who said there was no resurrection. They tried to stump Jesus with their questions but He said, “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God” (Matt. 22:23-29). Let’s keep pointing people back to the promises of God’s Word and the power of God. We aren’t dependent on ourselves.