Casualties of Change

I took the long way home the other day, and it brought me past my childhood house. I didn’t have a Miranda Lambert moment and knock on the door, but I did notice I dropped below the speed limit (probably to the annoyance of the driver behind me) and took in the view.

Everything about the exterior is different. The fence is now made of wood, not the low wire fence that my basset hound used to be able to jump… well, not really jump, he would lean on it until it bent down for him to step over. They painted the house brown. Not a nice brown, but this kind of gross tan. And they tore out the lilac bushes and Asian pear trees that my mom had planted. They probably replaced the front doorknob that didn’t even lock… neighbors and friends always just came and went, and sometimes the wind would blow in a squirrel… or a bird… and that dang basset hound did nothing about it… he was still a good dog, though.

I don’t blame the new inhabitants for making it their own. It’s theirs now to make memories in. They are unaware that the improvements they made to their house would make someone passing by feel a little bit sad… And the neighbors that used to barge right in have all moved, so it’s probably best if they got a doorknob that locks… who knows who’s living in that neighborhood now…

I’m not reminiscing for the sake of reminiscing… this was just one more thing lately that reminded me of the cost of change.

Maybe it’s just the visual changing of the seasons, but it’s beginning to dawn on me how much has changed… in the last month…year…decade… 25 years I’ve been on this earth… The funny thing is, most change in my life, I haven’t been consciously aware that I’m changing just as much as the people around me…

I don’t know if this is going to sound weird, but in my head, I’ve always felt like a stepping stone for other people… like I’m always there to take the weight of their latest problem, and then they just walk away… But lately, I’ve had a new way of looking at people as stepping stones in my own life, not in a “I’m gonna walk all over someone” kind of way, but in a “people in your life help you make it to where you are going and it doesn’t have to always be forever” kind of way…

I guess for me, I just have always seen people as cornerstones, foundational parts of my life that aren’t supposed to move or walk away… but things change. Lifestyles change, relationships change, needs change…

And it’s taken all this time for me to realize that I’m ok with being a stepping stone in someone’s life, and it doesn’t have to make me feel small or unimportant… Because I can’t be anyone’s cornerstone… and I don’t want anyone to be mine… except for Jesus… because after all, He’s the only one who is never going to change, and never going give up on me. He’s the safest choice to build my life around.

But even though I’ve come to this revelation in my own heart, it doesn’t mean I still am not sad when things change… when people move on… when I move on… Change always comes at a cost, even happy change means we are leaving something behind… pushing someone aside… And we’re not always aware or concerned with the “old” parts of our lives, apart from the fun stories we tell around the table at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

So I guess there are really two reasons for this midnight blog…

1. To recognize that there are casualties of change, and that they often go unrecognized, so I should remember to see the value in each person in my life today, because tomorrow one of us could be pulled in another direction…

2.  To remember that even when someone walks away, that it doesn’t have to shake my whole life… because they were never supposed to be my cornerstone anyway… and if I treated them as such, I need some repentance and time in the Word…

 

Therefore, this is what the Sovereign Lord says:
“Look! I am placing a foundation stone in Jerusalem,
    a firm and tested stone.
It is a precious cornerstone that is safe to build on.
    Whoever believes need never be shaken. —
Isaiah 28:16

 

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