If she’d get her act together, I wouldn’t be so stressed.
If he didn’t use me like that, I’d be okay.
I tell her and tell her and tell her and she doesn’t listen.
I know if I don’t do it then it won’t get done, so I have no choice.
Have you ever said any of these? Sure, we all have. You’re hoping for change, but it’s not coming. You fear that it will be the same ‘ole, same ‘ole a year . . .or ten years from now.
Can I tell you something? Something that might be hard to hear?
Change always begins with you.
Recently I listened to a stranger share her situation. She talked about the people who were doing her wrong. She shared how she felt stuck. She said that she told them how she felt, but they never listened.
She shared her “if onlys.”
If only they’d chip in.
If only they’d appreciate her a little more.
If only they’d do what was right.
“How long has this been going on?” I asked.
“Years,” she said. “I’m hoping that one day they’ll get the message.”
But they hadn’t. Not even a little bit. Chances are, unless there’s a miracle (and I believe in them) that she’ll be sharing these same frustrations years from now.
There’s such a fine line when people share their story. I haven’t walked in her shoes. I don’t know her life. I don’t want to reduce her to an example in a blog, because she’s more than that. She’s a woman who desperately wants change and isn’t sure how to get there from here.
So, what’s a girl to do?
In Luke 5:17-25, a paralyzed man is carried by friends. They stand before Jesus with their friend, and Jesus says to the lame man, “Your sins are forgiven.”
I can only imagine what the friends were thinking. They had carried this man a long way so that his legs might be healed. He can’t work at a job. He can’t take care of himself. He is dependent on friends for all of his needs.
Can’t you see the real problem, Jesus?
It’s not his heart or his emotions or even his sin. It’s his legs. Look, right there!
The religious leaders in the crowd thought he missed it, too. After all, the affliction was obvious.
Jesus wasn’t blind. He could see the exterior issues, but He loved this man body and soul, so healing began from the inside out.
For this beautiful woman and for me and you, we see real change when our prayers move from “fix her, fix this, fix that, fix my boss, fix all of the obvious stuff,” to:
Change me, Jesus.
The inside of me. Not just the obvious stuff like her or him or that.
Change my response to this situation or person.
If I need more courage to take a rightful stand, give me courage to do it in a healthy way.
If I need to stop talking and start acting, show me the right steps to take.
Help me to stop trying to fix others as I give you full access to my broken places.
If someone is abusing me or those I love, please show me my worth in You so that I raise my expectations.
Change me, Jesus.
It’s a hard prayer to pray, because we really do want to change. . . but what if the people around us don’t?
Just as the man leaped to his feet after Jesus touched his soul and body, we are made whole regardless of what the crowd around us thinks. That transformation may lead to significant changes in the way we deal with a situation or person, but we’re no longer waiting for them to be fixed before we stop feeling stuck.
Isn’t transformation wonderful and oh-so-hard? Isn’t it worth it?
Let’s pray this prayer together today.
Change me, Jesus.
I suppose it is human nature to look outward for things or people to change. “If only they….” I’ve been so guilty of that. Thank you so much for a reminder that I needed…real change begins with me and from the inside – out. Lord, when needed enable me to take the responsibility to enact change.
Accepting that I need to change comes with the responsibility of action. The paralyzed man had to get up and walk. Samantha has to open her mouth to have a courageous conversation. Thank you for reinforcing the idea that change begins right here. Right now.
‘ve been so guilty of looking around me for the sources of my frustration and, if I’m honest, never really expecting other people could change. I realized along the way that I didn’t really believe God could change me with all of my issues, so I became extremely pessimistic and jaded in how I viewed myself and other people.
When God began to truly transform me-heart, mind, and soul-I started to see other people differently too. I became aware of their capacity to be transformed, but at the same time I became increasingly aware that I didn’t need their transformation for my sake. God was all sufficient to meet any need I had, and my prayers for Him to work in others were able to be in light of wanting that same joy and freedom for them.
I don’t always go there first in my mind, sometimes I still want to be able to point at the specks in my neighbor’s eyes. But I’m grateful God is teaching me to not only shift my attention to the plank in my own, but also to the only one who can ever remove the specks and planks to begin with!
Thank you Suzie, for another great post and prompt!
I love this thought — I don’t need others to change for my sake. #powerful
Suzie, love this prompt, and you are inspiring us to let God’s Word change us daily through the words He is giving you to share!
When I read your post this morning, it made me think about the book ‘The Circle Maker’ by Mark Batterson – specifically about how when we want to pray for revival within the church, that it starts with praying for revival within our own heart. When we are desperate for change, it really must start with us because we can’t change other people. That can be a hard truth, especially when we feel stuck in a difficult situation. Thankfully, God CAN change people and situations. And prayer is powerful and effective so we can pray for His mighty hand to work a miracle in the hearts of those we love.
I’ve never read this book but it’s on my to-read list. What a beautiful way to describe revival. I want revival in my Spirit. I want it in my relationship with others. I want it in my faith. I.want.it. <3
I’m praying this prayer with you.
Change me, Jesus.
I always know when a post is meant for me that day and goes straight to my heart, because I my eyes well up with tears.
I have been sitting a bit on the pity pot of life, instead of taking courageous action. Not big action, nothing Earth shattering, but action that empowers and defines me. That takes courage.
Thank you Suzie for reminding me that God is on my side, but I need to do my part too.
Oh Shelly, a brave woman is one who sees where Jesus is leading and steps into that path with joy. I hear the bravery in your voice. I hear you acknowledging that there are small places where God wants to do His work. Praying today that you feel Him all day long, and then it starts again tomorrow.
His mercies are new every morning.
I’ve been there, wanting and desiring changes around me, but not looking and seeing that I need to change first. Great words and encouragement for me, to keep looking at Jesus while He transforms me. Being grateful every morning for His mercies!!! Thanks for sharing and hosting!
Tayrina from TGAWrites
Amen. I believe there are going to be some powerful posts today. What a great topic.
Thank you for leading me in this prayer!
Funny thing . . . our minds are running in the same course today with my Nehemiah post on Change and your excellent thoughts on “Lord, Change ME!” It’s so true that we are quick to pick out the speck in someone else’s eye, while being completely unaware that we’re sportin’ a PLANK! Happy Thursday, and thanks for hosting!
Oh, the dreaded plank. I’ve yanked that awful thing out of my eye way too many times. The other day I was talking about something small my husband did that drove me a little crazy. In fun, of course. (That’s how I wanted to think of it, at least.) One minute later I did the exact same thing. When Richard gently pointed it out, it made me wonder. How many times am I hyper focused on someone else’s behavior and totally oblivious to my own? Something to share with the Holy Spirit, and to ask Him to shift my focus from others to the places in me that still need a little extra growth. <3
I appreciate how you brought out the point that after we have asked God to search us and show us the areas that need to change, He may reveal that we need to take a stronger stand. I have the habit of sometimes doubting myself and thinking I need to give in to something – just grin and bear it. Maybe the change is that I need to stand a little stronger in a difficult situation. Thanks for a good encouragement today.
oh how I pray that God will change me everyday. Thank you for sharing and for allowing me to share my story on Live Free Thursday.
Jenny, I’m so grateful that you are a part of this conversation and community!
Powerful message — and my prayer, “Lord, Change Me.” Change my response seems hard to me. Especially when I’ve heard it from the same person over and over. It may be like forgiveness — 70×7.
Father, show Pamela how to do this. I haven’t walked in her shoes. I haven’t carried her burden, but you know what she needs and you love her like crazy. Let her feel you close today. Father, change takes time and give her what she needs as she changes her response. Let her not give up if things don’t change overnight, but show her the value of what you are doing inside of her, just because she’s Yours. In Jesus’ powerful name, amen.
Yes, yes, yes! This is my prayer, too —> “Change me, Jesus.” Your post today hits deep. It’s good. If only we’ll quit looking everywhere else, at everyone else, and simply say, “Change me, Lord.” You’re breathing fresh air today, Suzie.
Praying this prayer is scary because in order for God to change us, He often has to reveal some not so pretty things about our hearts. I am going through this right now. He is revealing one thing after another, and let me tell you, it is not comfortable. But I see His purpose behind it, and it is good! Ready to be transformed into the woman He has called me to be.
Suzie this is so good and such truth! Thank you sister. Thank you.
“Isn’t transformation wonderful and oh-so-hard? Isn’t it worth it?” Oh, how right you are, Suzanne. We don’t always like to admit that we are the ones who need changing, but it’s true. Maybe our circumstances won’t change, but God can change our attitudes. Thank you for reminding us that change always begins with us.
Gayl, some of these have been hard places where I’ve had to walk through so I could learn the value of them. It’s only when I saw what God was trying to do that I realized my hard places were actually my growing places, my intimacy with God places, my “discover who Suzie is” places. : )
You hit the bottom line Suzie: “It’s a hard prayer to pray, because we really do want to change. . . but what if the people around us don’t?” Yep! We fear that people won’t come through for us and we forget One already has. Much love to you dear friend.
I love how Jesus always goes straight to the heart of the matter. Thank you for this, Suzie. He is changing me and I have seen the people and situations around me change too. I can’t change other people, but I can let Him change me. Blessed by your words and by this community. <3
Powerful, powerful words, Suzie. It’s so easy to point the finger and think, “It’s all their fault.” I do it all the time. Lord, change me!
I asked recently on FB about your #LiveFreeThursday FB group. Is that a closed group? I’d love to see the prompts earlier in the week to join you sometime. 🙂 So glad to hear about the good news of your husband’s surgery.
I’m always so amazed how the Lord uses other people to speak His Words to me. I am a day late posting for this link-up, but I was not a day late in God’s time. When I saw the subject matter of “Change Me’ and read your post, it was as if God was saying, “Karen, listen to me.” You see just before I sat down to do my blog work for the day, I was having quite a pity party regarding all the wrongs people are doing to me.
I am so very thankful to my Lord and Savior who always gives me confirmation that He is there, He knows why I am hurting and when I am hurting and His Holy Spirit speaks to me through others and through His Word.
Thank you for sharing!
P.S. I read the blog post before me from My Messy Desk which was another very good post on “Change Me”, but unfortunately, every time I went to leave a comment, I received an error saying the “page was not found”. I would like to be an encouragement to her and thank her for sharing. 🙂
YES! Change me, Lord! When I acknowledge the truth that every change the Lord wants to make within me is a change to make me more Christlike … how can I not want to change?! Thank you for challenging us to change Suzie 🙂
Living free requires us to be willing to change, doesn’t it? We have to be the ones who choose His will as our best way, whether someone notices or not. Sometimes it is hard to lay to lay it all down, and sometimes I pick it back up, but when I let Him be the change agent there is a peace that makes it easier..
Thanks for leading so well.