“God of Change and Glory” by Al Carmines
God of change and glory, God of time and space,
When we fear the future, give to us your grace.
In the midst of changing ways, give us still the grace to praise.
Many gifts, one Spirit, one love known in many ways.
In our difference is blessing, from diversity we praise
One Giver, one Word, one Spirit, one God
Known in many ways, hallowing our days.
For the Giver, for the gifts, praise, praise, praise!
Change is inevitable. Some of us find it especially difficult to deal with change . “Why can’t things just stay the same?” we demand, sometimes angrily. We mourn the loss of that which, especially in the looking back, may seem even more golden than it was in reality.
So much in the world is worrisome— politics, the economy, wars that seems endless, family troubles, health concerns, and fear about what the future will bring. And so we dig in our heels and resist change, using what power we do have in situations to make sure things stay the same.
A different way of dealing with change is given to us in the words of the hymn “God of Change and Glory” from our New Century Hymnal. It is the Christian response to change. That response recognizes that even God changes—not in the steadfast love God has for us and for the universe that God made—but changes because God is alive and creative. To not change and grow is to be dead. Our God is the living God. And so we are able to place our trust in the God who loves us in the midst of changing times. We are able to open ourselves to change and growth, trusting that there are more gifts from God that will unfold in our lives if we allow ourselves to be open to them.
The congregation of Christ Congregational Church has experienced more than one big change in recent years—the retirement of The Rev. Dr. Steve Hudder after twenty-four years as pastor and teacher, the closing of the pre-school, and the opening of the church grounds to the Sunrise School of Miami, the Seventh Day Adventist Church, yoga, and Pilates classes, and others who share what was formerly just your space.
And now in this interim time, there will be other changes, as we discern together what God is calling CCC to be and to do in this time and place. I have already been impressed with your willingness to be open to new ideas, and to try new things. I look forward to working with you in our time together, trusting in our God of change and glory!
In Christ’s love,
Pastor Candy Thomas
Christ Congregational United Church of Christ