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Facing a change? Encouragement is four words away.

by Susan Stilwell


Fall is beautiful where I live. The velvety Blue Ridge Mountains have spun the color wheel and landed on warm yellows, oranges and reds.

I’m blessed to live in an area that enjoys all four seasons, and I enjoy watching them come and go.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven:
a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot,
a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build,
a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,
a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak,
a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.

~Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 (niv)

The cyclical nature of life amazes me, everything in constant motion toward the next season. All of it under the watchful eye of God.

Change can be hopeful when it’s something you’ve looked forward to and can enjoy with God’s blessing. Graduations, weddings, and retirements promise new exciting horizons. Change is stressful when the unexpected wrecks us or life takes a tragic turn. Events like death, illness, and job terminations usher in feelings of loneliness as we face the unknown.

Since change to be a constant in life, it’s healthy to remember some of the most comforting words in scripture:

It came to pass

Because it always does. Sometimes the change is for the better, leaving us in situations that bless our socks off. But sometimes change leaves us with holes in our hearts. Holes that never quite close. The jagged edges of hurt may smooth with time, but the hole remains.

As I look at some of the holes in my life, I’m reminded of the only One who knows their full scope. The One who knows the emptiness and Who can fill it perfectly and completely.

Jehovah Shammah

He is always there. As circumstances change, as people come and go, as trees drop their leaves preparing for their winter rest, we rest in this important truth:

We are never alone. Omnipotent, Sovereign, Unchanging: God is present, making everything beautiful in its time (Eccl 3:11a).

Email Author    |    Website About Susan Stilwell

Susan Stilwell is a wife to Steve, mom to Scott and Sarah. After that, she writes, teaches, blogs and speaks. If you want to see her get really excited, ask her about her travels to Israel! One of Susan’s favorite things to do is to chat over coffee. And don’t forget your smartphone and laptop — this former programmer is full of helpful hints! You can connect with Susan on her websiteTwitterFacebook, Instagram, or Google+

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Sherry Carter October 23, 2014 at 9:19 pm

Jehovah-Shammah – one of my favorite names. Whether I sense Him or not, even when I’m sure He’s not with me, He is There!


2 Betty October 28, 2014 at 11:18 am

I like that God is always there, even though we sometimes forget that. It is reassuring to know that.


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