“Long ago you laid the foundation of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you endure; they will all wear out like clothing, and they pass away; but you are the same, and your years have no end”
At one end of our fellowship hall are two enormous, floor-to-ceiling, custom-built, oak display cases. Their beauty and craftsmanship is a testimony to the ability of the man who designed and built them. Their contents, several large trophies, are a testimony to the great success of our men’s softball team. They were clearly a force to be reckoned with…several years ago…but not anymore. Not because they are not as good as they used to be, but because they are non-existent.
I know our church has not had a softball team for the three years I have been here. Judging by the team photos interspersed among the trophies, we have not had a softball team for at least a decade, if not more. Were it not for the display cases, many of our members would not even know we ever had one. What was clearly once a large part of our church’s life, is no more. And there is no indication this will change in the foreseeable future.
We all understand that change is an unavoidable part of our lives. The same is true of a church’s life. A church that has been around as long as we have, 270 years and counting, has probably seen more change than most. Many people are uncomfortable with change, especially when it happens in their church. Since I was not around when the decision was made to disband our softball team, I can’t say whether it was met with any opposition. I imagine at least a few of the players pitched a fit (pun intended), while some of their wives had a party to celebrate, but eventually they all got over it. I imagine Instead of focusing on the change they embraced the one constant, the one thing that had remained the same, and that was the God who has called this church into existence.
This was the attitude of the psalmist as he contemplated change, and of a far great degree than the end of a softball team; the end of the world as he knew it. It’s difficult to know exactly what made him feel as if his world was falling apart. If you read Psalm 102 in its entirety you get the sense that he was at least struggling with some type of personal illness, or the destruction of the city of Jerusalem, or both. Whatever change he was going through, in the midst of it, he clung to hope in the God who does not change.
You may be going through a time of change right now, maybe in your life personally, or in your church. Don’t cling too tightly to the way things used to be. Accept that change is inevitable. Find your security in the one thing that never changes, God. Be encouraged by these words, written by the author of Hebrews, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).