LIFE is a JOURNEY…..a JOURNEY involves CHANGE…..embrace CHANGE in your LIFE…..LIFE is a JOURNEY…..a JOURNEY involves CHANGE…..embrace CHANGE in your LIFE…..LIFE is a
Fourth “P” – Processing Change
“Observations of an Onion”
It is time for another “P” to be added to my plate of life! Perceiving . . Pursuing . . . Preparing . . . now Processing Change!
The first week we were in our new home, all I did was clean floors and unpack boxes. If anyone asked how I was doing, my response was “moving is a process.” I did not take much time for other people or even God. Finally, I decided to go for a walk in our new neighborhood. My body may have been outside but my mind was still inside the house. However, while I took a short journey through the streets of our new area, God revealed three “observations through an onion” to me regarding the bigger Life-Journey-Change we were encountering.
I was walking and talking. More specifically, I was verbalizing to God my annoyance with the sticky floors in our house. Five years later, I can still point out where I was on the sidewalk when I heard God speak to my spirit saying that I was just like the Israelites who grumbled because they did not have onions in their new land. (“We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost—also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic. But now we have lost our appetite; we never see anything but this manna!” Numbers 11:5-6) Me grumbling? Ouch! I thought I was just expressing my frustration. I would never consciously grumble or complain! I soon realized that I needed to change my attitude! My ear was now attuned to what else the Lord wanted to say to me.
As I continued my walk, I contemplated about what the Lord was revealing to me regarding onions. Yes, I had complained about the sticky floors in the great room and about how many layers of dirt I needed to remove. Now the Lord pointed out to me that just as there are many layers to an onion, currently there were many layers of grime accumulated on our floor. Just as the layers of an onion could be peeled apart, the filthy layers on our floor could be cleaned one layer at a time. (The Israelites grumbled about their lack of onions while I was complaining about my lack of clean floors.) I had been explaining our move as a process and now the Lord was showing me that cleaning the floors was a process similar to removing the layers of an onion. This reminded me of Deuteronomy 7:22, “The Lord your God will drive out those nations before you, little by little. You will not be allowed to eliminate them all at once, or the wild animals will multiply around you.” I needed to be patient and continue my cleaning projects while remembering that the Lord was with me and aware of what I was experiencing. Things happen “little by little” whether it be deliverance from an enemy, my cleaning floors, or peeling an onion.
Before I completed my walk, I became aware of another characteristic of an onion. The Lord reminded me that onions may cause a person to cry. I read more about this factor when I got home. The component in an onion that makes one’s eyes water is called the “lachrymatory factor.” This word comes from the Latin word lacrima that means “tear.” The lachrymatory factor irritates the eyes and stimulates the tear glands to produce tears. How did this apply to me and our move? I had to admit I had cried a few tears out of frustration during this “process of change” when things did not go like I expected. The Lord was now telling me that it was okay for me to cry. God knew everything and He had not ignored me, so it was alright for me to express my feelings rather than hide them. I like II Kings20:5 when the Lord says, “I have heard your prayer and seen your tears.” Yes, even today I must remind myself that Life is a Journey and a Journey involves Change so I need to embrace Change in my Life, even if I shed a few tears.
I have heard it said that it took longer to get Egypt out of the Israelites than it did to get the Israelites out of Egypt. I applied this statement to myself saying that it was going to take longer to get Webster out of me than it did to move me out of Webster. God had new things planned for us in our new community but first I had to be willing to let go of our former neighborhood. All of this was a process that was going to happen little by little over time. Once again, the Lord gave me scripture to summarize the meaning of the “P” word of Processing Change. Ecclesiastes 8:5b & 6 says, “the wise heart will know the proper time and procedure. For there is a proper time and procedure for every matter.”
My Reader, where are you regarding your Life-Journey-Change? Are you at a point of Processing Change? As I have shared today, although the process is not always easy, it is necessary. Observe an Onion and learn a few lessons as I did. Join me in the Bible Study for Processing Change where I probe more deeply into “The Observations of an Onion.”