Friday, July 20 , 2018, 5:04 pm | Fair 74º

 
 
 
 
Faith

Jim Langley: Are You Prepared to Move Forward?

Change is certain. Change is constant.

On the surface, we might think that our lives are not faced with constant change, but they are. I’ve remained in the same career with the same insurance company for more than 30 years and my family had worshipped at the same church here in Santa Barbara for 28 years.

Well on our last anniversary, we found ourselves visiting a new church and considering moving our membership after all those years. Making this change has been tough, but we now know this is our Lord’s will for our lives, and we have moved forward.

During those many years we experienced some interesting times, which included merging with another church, purchasing an existing church building and property, and seeing our senior pastor retire after 46 years of service.

As a body of believers, we faced plenty of challenges along the way, but saw our God take us through it all. But now, my wife, Janet, and I have found peace in making a change after all those years of service.

During my many years as an insurance agent, I’ve experienced much change as well. The company has remained committed to serving its growing clientele through the agency system, but our business has constantly evolved. With the advent of the computer and the Internet, the whole industry has taken on a new complexion.

What hasn’t changed is my love for the business and the opportunity to serve through my knowledge of a fairly complex business. Through it all, I still see God wanting me to stay right where I am, serving my clients as best as possible with the skills and tools He’s given me.

I’m especially thankful for the close relationships that will continue through my involvement in CBMC (Christian Business Men’s Connection) and the Connect3 training completed several years ago. It’s helped me focus on building new relationships with fellow Christians that have truly been iron sharpening iron experiences in my life.

Church life is important in our walk with Christ, but I credit the maturity in my walk to CBMC.

At this point, I have no idea how God wants to use us at this new church, but I know He knows and He’ll show us in His perfect timing. Church is only one facet of our walk with Jesus, but it’s extremely critical to “not give up meeting together as some are in the habit of doing” and we must “encourage one another — and all the more as you see the day approaching!” (Hebrews 10:25)

For me and my family, we have experienced the importance of close fellowship during our trials, and we know the value of being there for others in their trials as well. As our lives make the transition, I see exciting times ahead, allowing us to grow as a family and serve God in new and diverse ways. There’s a fresh scent in the air and I know we are in His will!

Change is a natural progression in our life journey and it takes many forms. Few stay in the same career for a lifetime these days. We will all face challenges on our journey, and it does no good to look back on the past. We must press forward just as Paul persevered on his final journey to Rome.

Passages to Ponder

» Daniel 2:21

» Hebrews 10:23-25

» Acts 21:10-15

» Romans 12:1-5

— Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent in Santa Barbara. In recent years, his passion has turned to writing about his personal relationship with God, and his goal is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. As a longtime member of CBMC of Santa Barbara ​(Christian Business Men’s Connection), he started writing Fourth Quarter Strategies columns in 2014, and he now reaches an international audience through the CBMC International devotional Monday Manna. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

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