“Times have changed, the culture has changed, rules have changed, and expectations of leaders have changed. Metathesiophobia is the impossible-to-pronounce word for ‘fear of change.’ Fearing, resisting, or balking at the need to change, grow, and adapt can be your undoing as a leader. It can start a downward spiral for your organization or group. The only thing that seems to remain the same is change. Change is more prolific, rapid, and complex than ever before. The only place you can’t be sure of change is from a vending machine. Everything else is up for grabs.” (Dave Kraft, Leaders Who Last).
I like this quote by Dave Kraft a lot! I’m only 41, and oftentimes I find myself relying on how things were executed from when I first entered into the ministry and had some semblance of ‘results.’ But times have changed even when I entered into the ministry in 1992. But in fact, I’ve been chewing on this notion for a number of years (having blogged about this back in 2010).
Being in a multigenerational church is a beautiful thing for me, but must be approached with a prayerful vision. Some of the younger generation is ready to embrace change yesterday. A change is seen, and must be implemented now if not sooner! While some who may be in the more seasoned chapter of their lives may not embrace change too readily.
Praise God for both!
The enthusiasm of the younger generation and the wisdom of moving cautiously can sharpen each generation for the betterment of the entire church body. But when there is a clear understanding that change needs to take place, we must be willing to “change, grow, and adapt.”
What must never change is the unchanging Word of God in the life and breath of the church. Psalm 119:89 says:
Forever, O Lord, your word
is firmly fixed in the heavens.
We also read from 1 Peter 1:23-25:
22 Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, 23 since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God; 24 for
“All flesh is like grass
and all its glory like the flower of grass.
The grass withers,
and the flower falls,
25 but the word of the Lord remains forever.”
And this word is the good news that was preached to you.
The preached Word is what saves and sanctifies—regardless of the culture or time or situation. While we may apply the Word in these various areas, the Word must not be compromised!
So we must keep in mind: the culture is not infallible or inspired, it’s fallen. Yet, we risk grasping that more dearly to our hearts than the unchanging Word of God from God! Methodologies change, the Word does not! Let’s make sure we get that principle firmly fixed in our minds.