The Hardest part of Change


Change is never easy.      change

Organizationally we are in the middle of a HUGE strategic change. After 44 years as a non-profit, Youth Dynamics (YD) is reorganizing in order to maximize our Kingdom Impact. It’s been almost 2 years since we started the process, and I believe we have just passed the tipping point. Change is imminent.

Personally, after 47 years of eating pizza, I started working out for the first time since High School. I completed p90x this summer and 30 days ago just began a a new workout program called Body Beast.

With all this change happening in different areas of my life this year, I’m discovering a few things about CHANGE that I thought I should share.

1. Deciding to CHANGE was the hardest part

When I made the decision to start p90x I had gotten to the point in my life where I was completely fed up with things the way they were. I was overweight, I didn’t like how I looked, almost to the point of being disgusted with myself. With my organization, coming to the conclusion that our mission was being compromised by things staying the way they were was critical. I had to get to the point that I could not live with things remaining the same, knowing that a change would make a difference in thousands of teenagers lives. And then I had to convince my organization of the same. Organizational change is more difficult than making a personal change, but both begin with you deciding that change needs to happen.

2. Change doesn’t happen as quickly as I’d like

In my exercise programs, you only take your measurements every 30 days. I was so excited for my first measurement in p90x, I felt so strong, so healthy. I was excited to finally quantify the results. Day 30 came, we took my measurements… and to my great surprise there was not much measurable change. I was so disappointed. I was eating healthy, I had worked out 30 days straight. Where was this change I was promised? Then my 21 yr old coach said something profound to me.

“Just keep doing the work, the results will take care of themselves.”

I had to trust the process. We say it all the time in YD. Do the work. Trust the process. I couldn’t quantify the results yet, but I knew I was in the middle of a massive change. And sure enough, it wasn’t long after that the weight started peeling off. Yesterday was my 30th day of this new exercise program, Body Beast; and the same thing happened after taking my measurements. I have some tangible results, but not near what my expectations were. But after my success of completing p90x I now know this is normal and I am not nearly as disappointed. I will keep doing the work, and let the results take care of themselves.

3. For me the hardest part of change happens way before the battle even starts.

I expect change to be hard work. I expect there to be obstacles. But in my life, the battle is won at the beginning. Deciding I need to change, then determining what changes need to be made are the biggest obstacles to me making a change. But once I lock onto something, I will see it through to completion. And there will be tearing of flesh to get me to change course.

How about you? Is there a change that needs to happen in your life? What part of the process is most difficult for you?

~Mark

Read more about my change in my blogpost -“I need a new mirror – Youth Ministry made me Fat”.

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I just previewed the Son of God Movie


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So can I be brutally honest? I hate most Christian movies. They’re cheesy, the story lines are predictable and the acting in mediocre at best. So when I got invited to preview the Son of God movie, to say I was skeptical would be an understatement. I went in a skeptic, I walked out a fan. The Son of God was the best movie about Christ since The Passion, and not nearly as violent. At 2:45 minutes, it is long, but doesn’t drag. I thought the writers did a good job of portraying the culture and the setting that first century Jews found themselves in under occupation of Rome, and showing the tension between the Jewish religious leaders and their Roman rulers. For purists, there are inaccuracies and artistic licence taken in a few places, but nothing that I can’t live with, and in some places it really helps the story. For instance, I really enjoyed the role of Nicodemus inserted into the narrative, and his perspective is one that many unchurched viewers will resonate with. As a Christ-follower, I will not be ashamed to take any of my unchurched friends to this movie, which is saying something. Plan on getting dessert or something after the movie, so you can take full advantage of the inevitable questions that will come up. If you are a youth worker, I would encourage your small group leaders to take their groups, even purchase the tickets if necessary. People are not going to drop to their knees at the conclusion of this movie, but the Son of God movie can be a fantastic tool in the hands of a missional Christ-follower. Don’t miss this rare opportunity as a Christ-follower to utilize good media in our mission. To quote Peter near the end of the movie… “We’ve got work to do.”

 

 

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