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A Catalyst For Change

I serve as an adjunct professor at Southeastern University. One of the classes I teach is Change Management. Change is all around us. Todays leaders must learn how to manage change in an organizational context in such a way that the overall vision and the basic values of the organization are moved forward in a way that is productive and Glorifies our Heavenly Father. John F. Kennedy said: “Change is the law of life and those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” Why is change management important? We are living in a day when society is changing at a faster rate than ever before. Because of this rapid pace, faith based organizations must be willing to change their methods if they are to remain relevant. The challenge is to change the methods, which are temporal, without changing the message, which is timeless. Many resist change for fear of compromising the message of Christ. For this reason, the 21st century leader must engage change management principles that can implement effective changes while making them palatable to stakeholders and guarding the values we hold dear. We must view change as a process and not an event. The process will involve understanding how people interact with change, as well as equipping ourselves with a basic knowledge of change management theory. As Christian leaders, it is imperative that we look to the Holy Spirit to empower us through the change process. The Holy Spirit can be a catalyst for change in people, situations and organizations. In organizational terms, a catalyst is someone that precipitates change without being altered in the process. The Holy Spirit has a clear view of every person’s heart and mind so that He knows what changes are necessary and will empower us to lead the change process. The Holy Spirit uses a variety of gifts, abilities and personalities to affect change. God is able to harmonize a wide diversity of gifts, talents and personalities for the most effective change in people and organizations. Paul wrote, “There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good.” (I Cor. 12:6,7) We can ask the Lord to help us understand and cooperate with the way the Spirit is harmonizing a wide variety of peoples’ gifts, abilities and personalities to effect His changes in our organization.