[This post is a part of teaching notes from the middle sermon series Changes]
This week we began the first week of a four week series entitled "Changes." Change is a part of life. It cannot be avoided. From the moment you enter the world as a tiny baby and until you take your last breath, things will be constantly changing. While change is common, it is often difficult. Apart from being a newborn, there is no other time in life where more changes are happening than when someone is in their middle school years. Because of this having something that is constant and unchanging will make survival significantly easier in the difficult years of middle school.
Changes. That's Just the Way It Is
As I asked students on Sunday morning to share some things that commonly change in their lives, there was very little difficulty listing several things. Boys voices changes, people's physical appearances change. Musical tastes change. Friendships change as people make new friends and lose old ones. School becomes more difficult. Elementary students become middle school students. New responsibilities are given. Pretty much the only thing that is not changing for a middle school student is the fact that everything is changing.
In a world of constant change, the truth that God's character is constant becomes even more important. God's character is always important, but there is a safety that comes with knowing that we can have certain expectations that God will be the way He has continually been throughout all of history. Navigating the changes of middle school can be exciting, difficult, scary, emanational, and confusing all at the same time. It might be a normal part of life, but it still is difficult and knowing that God will not change is incredibly comforting.
We change, but God does not. The world might change, but God does not. Our friends might change, but God does not. The truth of who God is does not ever change. God's character remains the same today as it was from the very beginning of creation. The God that spoke the universe into existence is the same God that protected Noah in the flood. The God who was with Joseph as he was sold into slavery and who transformed the life of Paul is the same God that promises to be with us today. Just as God protected Noah, God protects us. Just as God was with Joseph as he was sold into slavery, he is with us as our lives seemingly fall apart. And just as God didn't think Paul's murderous past wasn't beyond the reach of God's forgiveness, nothing that we have done is beyond God's forgiveness.
"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever." - Hebrews 13:8