Father, we come before you now on bended knee, hoping to honor you with our integrity. Please make our judgement as sound as steel and be our hands upon the wheel. Give us strength and vigilance on our routes and help us to serve others, as You did, Lord, without any doubts. Remind us to be gentle, humble and kind, and help us when we stumble in body and mind. Please shelter our families whilst we are away and bring us safely back to them at the end of this day.

Embracing Change

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Listen to this week’s devotional on The J Bar Experience Podcast!

Luke 5:3-5 “Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. And Simon answering said unto him, Master we have toiled all the night and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. And when they had this done, they enclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken: And so was also James, John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men. And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him.”

I am going to speak to us this morning about a subject that I hate. I hate this, and I rebel against it with every fiber of my being and I sometimes wish that I didn’t have to go through it. It is uncomfortable, I don’t want it, but I am going to talk to us about change. 

They don’t make my favorite sunglasses anymore. In order for me to get the sunglasses I like, I have to scour the internet, eBay, and everything else and try to find a pair and if I find more than one pair, I buy several. I know one day there will come a time that I have to change sunglasses. And someone will say, “but they’re just sunglasses!” But I like what I like; and I don’t like change.

I need a new pair of boots and the only reason I haven’t bought a new pair of boots is they don’t make them anymore, so I’ve got to scour the internet. I don’t want to have to go and find a new pair of boots that I’ve never worn before. I don’t know how they’re going to fit or how they’re going to wear, how they’re going to feel… and I don’t like change. 

I don’t know if anyone else is like me, but I like what I like, and I want what I like. And I’m going to stay in that comfort zone and ride it out just as long as I possibly can. 

These men faced change. As Jesus was teaching the people from Simon’s ship he said I want you to go out and let out your nets, and he was reluctant but he let down a net and he was surprised at the amount of fish that was taken in.
When Jesus said come and follow me and you’ll be a fisher of men, the Bible says they forsook all. Think about what that means: they left a lucrative business, they were separated from family and friends, everything they knew. But they embraced the change in order to grow, in order to become everything that God intended for them to become; everything for them to prosper and fulfill their role they had to embrace the change.

As I was considering this past year both personally and professionally, ministerially, I thought about J Bar and there is one word that I kept thinking about and it was change. We have had a lot of change in the past year. We switched operating systems; we switched our software that we work with every day; we have seen a lot of changes in personnel. We have seen people change positions within J Bar. There has been a lot of change.
You know what hasn’t changed? What we haven’t compromised on at all is our core values. We haven’t changed the standards by which we operate, and our convictions, the quality that we expect and try to deliver to our customers. And it is hard sometimes to embrace the change. 

I don’t like change. Seeing new faces, seeing old faces go, changing operating systems, changing trucks– drivers, you know what I am talking about. I like my truck. I am used to my truck. “Yeah, well you can’t have your truck today it’s down; you have to use this truck.” Change. 

It is necessary. We can either embrace the change in order to grow, to prosper, to become everything that God intended for us to be in our personal lives, our professional lives, in every area of our lives. Or we can keep fighting against it and we might seem to do well for a little while, but we’re never going to reach the best version of ourselves until we learn to embrace the change.

I want to encourage us this morning – while it is hard and uncomfortable, listen: Peter and the disciples were in a ship in the midst of the sea, there was a raging storm going on all around them and Jesus came to them on the water. The safest place for them to be, the place where they felt the most comfortable was in that boat. But Peter embraced the change and said “Lord if it be you, let me be with you on the water.”

It might be uncomfortable, but we’ve got to learn how to step out of the boat. We’ve got to embrace the change and move forward. 2023 is behind us, and none of us know this morning what the next year will hold. But I can tell you it is going to hold a lot of change. But we are going to embrace it, we are going to grow, we are going to prosper, and we are going to be blessed. 

Remember – We are J-Bar — we are blessed beyond measure. We love — we are thankful beyond measure. We serve, and in so doing become the leaders that God wants us to be.”

Jerry White
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