And all of us, with unveiled faces, seeing the glory of the Lord as though reflected in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another; for this comes from the Lord, the Spirit. (2 Corinthians 3:18 NRSV)

"Boy was that good!"

I awakened feeling refreshed and rested. After some minor surgery, I had spent the previous week unable to sleep on my side — my preferred snoozing position — and had been stuck trying to sleep on my back. Now you may scoff or think that I'm a bit of a wimp, but all who have made this journey know the seriousness of the problem. Ask someone who is in the midst of sleep habit changes and that person will grumpily let you know that this is no joking matter. There are no simple changes in sleeping habits!

But we're not really talking about sleeping habits. We're talking about changes. It's that time of the year. Fresh off a New Year's weekend and flush with the "first day of the rest of your year" passion, we are now left to implement those changes that we resolved to make a few days ago. This is the Monday we begin in earnest on our new diet, exercise regimen, commitment to financial restraint, faithfulness to daily quiet time, or whatever it is that we have resolved to do better this year. In other words, we’re trying to make some needed changes in our lives. However, we will soon find out that there are no simple changes.

Change is not something most of us do well. We like our routines — even if we know that they are really ruts and that a rut is nothing more than “a grave without ends.” Predictability, as much as we complain about its boring sameness, feels safer to us. We don't make changes unless our current situation is so painful that we are forced to change or unless the offer in the change is so unbelievably rewarding that we decide to make the leap to something new. Even then, our changes are often cosmetic and simplistic rather than core changes that make a real difference in our lives. There are just no simple changes.

There are just no simple changes.
As believers in the Lord Jesus, our goal really shouldn't be change; our goal should be transformation. Transformation is the work of God; it's something he invites us to share, but something only he can truly perform. So as you seek to make those changes that will leave you a better person at the end of the year, please take a look at the following words of wisdom from your heavenly Father and accept his invitation to do more than change. Be his partner in the work of transformation in your life, for there are no simple changes!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
and he will direct your paths.
Don't be impressed with your own wisdom.
Instead, fear the LORD and
turn your back on evil.
Then you will gain renewed health and vitality. (Proverbs 3:5-8 NLT)