To be the salt and light in the world we are called to be, we need to always maintain God’s unchanging truth but be willing to make changes in how that message is presented. Yet, in the church we frequently find resistance to change. Such resistance often stems from fears and insecurities.
The Great Commission Can Help Us Overcome Fears & Insecurities Related to Change
If we look at the Great Commission in its entirety we find help for overcoming those fears and insecurities as we “go and make disciples.”
1) Do it under our Lord Jesus’ authority.
Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations … (Matt. 28:18-19a)
When we do what He wants us to do, we can let the results up to Him. Fear of failure is minimized when we truly believe we are making the changes the Lord wants us to make. So, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight” (Prov. 3:5-6).
2) Keep the focus on the Lord, not yourselves.
baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. (Matt. 28:19b-20a)
People whose primary concern is pointing others to the Lord are not bound by the insecurities that come from preoccupation with what people think about them. They will implement the necessary changes so that “in every way they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive” (Titus 2:10).
3) Remember that the Lord is with you when you function under His authority.
And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. (Matt. 28:20b)
When we walk into the unknowns that come with change, we don’t have to be afraid with the all-powerful, all-wise, and all-knowing One right there with us. We can repeat the words of the Psalmist who said, “I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” (Ps. 16:8)
If you find yourself or others in your church resistant to change, ask which of the above three points needs to be addressed and take the steps to line up with the realities of the Great Commission.